If We Legalise Drugs, Would More People Take Them?

One of the main arguments against the legalisation of drugs is that it will encourage more people to take them. Where does this argument come from?

Government intervention is used to communicate what is considered desirable and undesirable; undesirable products are either made illegal or taxed heavily. Desirable products and services are often subsidised (ie: public schooling).

Tobacco is a great example. It is considered undesirable from society’s point of view due to its scientifically proven healthy ramifications. For this reason, it is heavily taxed with regular increases in the tax include in a pack of cigarettes. The Government also spends millions each year educating the public on the health risks associated with smoking.

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Lessons From Alcohol Prohibition

During the 1920s Alcohol was prohibited in the United States.

There is a lot we can learn about drug prohibition by looking closely at what effect prohibition had on the consumption and sale of alcohol during this period.

Prohibition is not a deterrent, more people are using drugs than ever before even though the severity of punishment is extreme in many parts of the world.

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From Prosecution To Education

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How on earth could we as a society go from prohibition to legalisation? The steps we think would be involved are below.

1. Decriminalise Possession: Stop persecuting individuals for having personal quantities of drugs. This will immediately wipe out all hospitalisation/deaths from individuals taking large amounts of drugs when they see the police are present.

This step will also free up police and judicial resources to deal with serious and violent crimes like rape, murder and robbery.

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Positive Drug Stories

Why do so many people take illegal drugs even at the risk of prosecution? Even when they are forced to risk their health because the industry is run by gangsters?

The reason is not because they are addicted. According to the United Nations only 12% of recreational drug users are ‘problem users’.*

The reason the other 88% use drugs recreationally is because it has a positive effect on their lives. We never hear about positive drug stories;  Continue reading