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Decriminalise all drugs, says ex-minister Bob Ainsworth

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posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 06:24 AM
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Originally posted by alysha.angel
This would be a big mistake on this guy part.

ok certain drugs sure im all for it . but ALL drugs what is he thinking ?

seriously what is he thinking?

you need to take into account the short term and long term effects of this idea ...
you got hardcore drug users out there by the millions . and sooner or later kids younger and younger would take up the habit .
more ODs more accidents you name it it would increase 10 fold


How so? More OD's, not so! Most first time users do NOT overdose, if anything they under-dose because they fear overdosing. Generally those that die from drug overdosing have been using for some time, and know their limits. They die because they got a hold of a bad batch, or more accurately, they got a hold of a batch that had not been cut as many times and was much more potent batch than what they were used to using, They used their usual amount, but because it hadn't been cut as much as what they were used to and was far more potent, it killed them. Or, someone in the distribution chain cut it with something else that killed them.

Remove the criminal aspect and even if drug use and abuse didn't decrease they would at least be clean, uncut and safer for those that did use, and the casualty rate would dramatically decrease.

Now I'll go a step further and say that our current policy is responsible for thousands upon thousands of casualties

Younger kids would take up the habit? Nope! Most drug users started, or at least experimented with drugs when they were in their teens. Why, in large part because they were told not to and it was a way of rebelling. And of course there was also the peer pressure.

Decriminalize drug use and you take away at least a part of the rebellious aspect. Beyond that, if we spent 1/10 the money on education and rehabilitation that we spend on investigating, prosecuting and incarcerating drug users, the drug epidemic would probably be 1/10 of what it is today.

If you could walk into a drug store and buy crack coc aine over the counter for a quarter a hit, but it came with a warning that you WOULD become addicted and that in a very short time your life would deteriorate to a point that you didn't care about your family, friends, career or anything else that mattered, and your only concern would be getting another hit and staying high, how many people do you think would roll the dice?

Another benefit of decriminalization would be that the crime rate would drop exponentially, as would the cost to maintain our prison system.

The reason drugs are so expensive and so profitable is because they are illegal. Take the criminal aspect out of the equation and you take out the profit.

Pharmaceutical coc aine costs next to nothing, yet because it is illegal the street value is marked up hundreds of times.. Below is a link to a 1985 article from the Milwaukee Sentinel stating that pharmaceutical coc aine sold for $50 an ounce at the time. On the street the estimated worth was placed at $2,500 an ounce. That a markup of 5000%, before a single cut. But, coc aine is probably cut at least 2 or 3 times before getting to the user, and it's probably cut by over 50%, making the profit rise to TEN THOUSAND PERCENT! That's more lucrative than anything else that I'm aware of. And we wonder why we have a drug problem!

MIlwaukee Sentinel Article

Provide education and rehabilition instead of incarcaration, and we might even make it possible to more easily reintegrate abusers into society.

As it stands now, we lock them up and when they come out of prison not only have they been out of society for some time, but they also have a criminal record and are likely to find it rather difficult to find decent employment. As a result they may feel their only option is a life of crime.

And, they just graduated from where? Crime School!

America the Free, the country that champions human rights all over the world, yet we incarcerate a higher percentage of our population than any other country, and we lock them up for the longest terms! As of 2008, our prison population per capita was 600% higher than the world average. 1 in every 45 adults were on some form of community supervision, such as probation or parole. In 2007 the prison population increased more rapidly than the U.S. population. Yes, there were more people put in prison than there were babies born and people migrating here, combined!

Yeah, what we're doing ain't working!
edit on 17-12-2010 by mark-in-dallas because: (no reason given)




posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 06:54 AM
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I agree with Bob. Although I find it very hard to say heroin and meth should be legalized. Those drugs are just demonic. I suppose I would agree with those being legal under very tight ruling. 28 years old and up, regulation on amount you can purchase at any one period of time etc...

I don't want to sound like a broken record, but at the same time, I want to get this statement out there because it is so important; The government has no right to tell you, what you can and cannot put in your own body. Your government does not know what is best for you. You, and only you, knows what is best.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 07:43 AM
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reply to post by mark-in-dallas
 




Most drug users started, or at least experimented with drugs when they were in their teens. Why, in large part because they were told not to and it was a way of rebelling. And of course there was also the peer pressure.


Young people drink alcohol and smoke. Why, these drugs are legal, there is no rebellion, so according to your logic they should not. The answer is that rebellion due to drug illegality is really a very minor part of the causes leading young people to use drugs.
Illegality, high price and unavailability of drugs (compared to them being sold like alcohol) is actually a very good thing to combat peer pressure. If a teen doesnt want to use hard drug, he can say he has not enough money, cannot find a good dealer or wont do it because of the high police presence in the area. Instead of having to admit he is simply afraid of the consequences and losing much more respect points among his peers. You must realise that teens are often not able to make a stand for their true opinions among pressure from other teens, thats simply a fact, so providing other excuses to not do it is a very good thing.



If you could walk into a drug store and buy crack coc aine over the counter for a quarter a hit, but it came with a warning that you WOULD become addicted and that in a very short time your life would deteriorate to a point that you didn't care about your family, friends, career or anything else that mattered, and your only concern would be getting another hit and staying high, how many people do you think would roll the dice?


The same warning is on the packs of cigarettes, even with pictures of lung cancer over half the pack. And many people still smoke, many young start smoking too. Why should it be different with hard drugs? And heroin is even more addictive that nicotine (it takes far less fixes to become physically addicted to it), so what would be gained by education about its far more negative effects would be lost by its far higher addictive potential.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 07:46 AM
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"it's not a war on drugs, it's a war on personal freedom, we need to keep that in mind at all times."

I dont know who said that originally but its at the start of a tool song... Very good quote and true

GummB



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 08:19 AM
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Without reading the whole post, the facts ARE on the side on decriminalisation.

Drugs in Portugal - Did decriminalisation work?

and

5 years after : Portugal´s drug decriminalisation policy shows positive results


The theory: focusing on treatment and prevention instead of jailing users would decrease the number of deaths and infections.

1. number of deaths from street drug overdoses dropped from around 400 to 290 annually

2. the number of new HIV cases caused by using dirty needles to inject heroin, coc aine and other illegal substances plummeted from nearly 1,400 in 2000 to about 400 in 2006,

"dealers are still jailed and subjected to fines depending on the crime."

"Now instead of being put into prison, addicts are going to treatment centers and they're learning how to control their drug usage or getting off drugs entirely,"

Pure facts.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 08:25 AM
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Originally posted by Maslo
I am all for legalisation (and taxing) of soft drugs with low physical addictive potential and low effective/damaging dose ratio, like marijuana, '___', mushrooms.. But to decriminalise ALL drugs, even heroine, meth etc., that is just crazy.

edit on 17/12/10 by Maslo because: (no reason given)


Could you please elaborate... crazy in what way?
Do you believe that the number of drug users would dramatically increase?
Do you believe crimes committed by these drug users would increase?

Here are two very interesting links: (funny how our mainstream media has not picked up on this)
In a nutshell, Portugal has decriminalized ALL drugs in 2001 with positive results.

newstrust.net...



In the face of a growing number of deaths and cases of HIV linked to drug abuse, the Portuguese government in 2001 tried a new tack to get a handle on the problem—it decriminalized the use and possession of heroin, coc aine, marijuana, '___' and other illicit street drugs. The theory: focusing on treatment and prevention instead of jailing users would decrease the number of deaths and infections.

Five years later, the number of deaths from street drug overdoses dropped from around 400 to 290 annually, and the number of new HIV cases caused by using dirty needles to inject heroin, coc aine and other illegal substances plummeted from nearly 1,400 in 2000 to about 400 in 2006, according to a report released recently by the Cato Institute, a Washington, D.C, libertarian think tank.


Here is one from Switzerland... pretty much the same conclusion so I will let you go through it. Though it emphasizes that when users had access to an unlimited supply, their dosage actually decreased.

www.drugpolicy.org...



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 08:29 AM
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Originally posted by finallianstallion
Without reading the whole post, the facts ARE on the side on decriminalisation.

Drugs in Portugal - Did decriminalisation work?

and

5 years after : Portugal´s drug decriminalisation policy shows positive results


WOW, we were on the same page this morning... hopefully it will really make people stop and analyze things based on facts instead of heavily implanted propaganda and skewed social mores.

Cheers,
the Billmeister



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 08:33 AM
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Pros and cons of legalising the currently illegal drugs.

PROs

Cleaner, safer drugs.

You'd be able to buy different strengths of the drug to suit your taste.

You'd know exactly what you were getting. And you'd get instructions on how to do it.

It would put drug gangs out of business.

The thousands of police officers that now work in drug squads would have something better to do. They could focus on the real dangerous violent criminals.

Scientific research into the benefits of Psilocybin and '___' can finally pick up where it left off. When '___' was discovered in the 40's, researchers were having amazing results in curing addictions such as alcoholism.

It would bring a massive amount of money into the economy.

We would be able to educate children openly and honestly about the positive and negative effects of a particular substance. At the moment, most people in western cultures are either ignorant to these facts, or just choose not to talk about it, and as a result - "drugs are bad." That is just confusing the child.

Most importantly, it might be the cure to healing the planet. Psychedelics, if used in a responsibly, have the ability to highlight moronic behaviour and basically show you where you're going wrong. They are teaching tools. If the leaders of the world all took these, it would free them of the spell they've been under the past few hundred and we might be able to steer the ship to safety. At the moment we are on the road to destruction.
We could experiment on volunteers who are just about to leave prison, and see if it cures them of their stupidity.

Cons

Errrrr... easier to get hold of?

..................................................................................................................................................

What I'm trying to point out is, these substances will always be here. They are not going away. We can either control and regulate these things, or leave it to the underground drug gangs to make a living off. The drug war is over.

edit on 17/12/2010 by HexagonSun because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 08:42 AM
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reply to post by Dimitri Dzengalshlevi
 

WTF cocane is not a soft drug. Hash, marijuana, honey oil,hash oil, grass oil are soft drugs derived from the cannibis plant.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 08:50 AM
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Originally posted by enament

reply to post by Dimitri Dzengalshlevi
 

WTF cocane is not a soft drug. Hash, marijuana, honey oil,hash oil, grass oil are soft drugs derived from the cannibis plant.


Cocaine is a powdered substance taken straight out of the cocoa plant. Chemicals don't come into the mix until you add baking soda, then it becomes crack coc aine. It's high is of a "soft" nature too, as in all it does is temporarily intensify your emotions and induce euphoria (as opposed to losing touch with you body, mind, or soul, which hard drugs manipulate).

I just have to say that there are some amazing responses in this thread so far... this is literally the most insightful ATS discussion I've ever been a part in.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 08:56 AM
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Originally posted by Pakd-on-mystery

Originally posted by christina-66
reply to post by Pakd-on-mystery
 






I get angry, because there are alot of young people, who believe things they read here. If they read phoney posts like that they think "hey, if there not real drugs, why not get hooked up?"
And that is the exact reason for the common use of drugs now a days.
Druggies keep saying "this ain't even a real drug, and it's not that bad", well, i got news for you.
like I said A DRUG IS A DRUG
Only people stuck on drugs consider it not being a drug.
Drugs should not be taken by anyone no matter how "pure", they clog your mind and conclude in loosing reality.
edit on 16/12/2010 by Pakd-on-mystery because: (no reason given)


Wow you sound like you're right out of the reefer madness propaganda film!! You should be doing some research before you express you're personal opinions not based on fact.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 09:09 AM
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reply to post by Pakd-on-mystery
 

Ok do you drink coffee in the morning? Coffee is an addictive drug how many Canadians and Americans couldn't get up in the morning to go to work with out it?. My brother cant function unless he has 4-5 cups of coffee a day.
For some giving up coffee is unthinkable coffee is a stimulant.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 09:11 AM
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Goverments need to stop telling people what to do with their lives. If someone wants to get doped up on something, theyre going to find a way to do it. Take the money out of the hands of the criminals and into the hand of the people that should be held accountable for their own actions. Last time I checked we're all adults here right? Maybe then we wouldnt continue ruining people's lives by throwing them in a prison with rapists and murders for smoking a plant.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 09:39 AM
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Originally posted by AndrewJay
Goverments need to stop telling people what to do with their lives. If someone wants to get doped up on something, theyre going to find a way to do it. Take the money out of the hands of the criminals and into the hand of the people that should be held accountable for their own actions. Last time I checked we're all adults here right? Maybe then we wouldnt continue ruining people's lives by throwing them in a prison with rapists and murders for smoking a plant.


Exactly.

Consider, for example, what would happen in BC if we legalized marijuana. Hundreds of thousands of jobs would be opened up for growers, suppliers and dealers. The industry is already worth $5 billion dollars in BC alone; tax the sales of marijuana by like 10% and that's half of a billion towards the school system (which is now reduced to using "portable" trailers for class rooms because of lack of funding), health care costs (which will cut down wait lists which is our only major problem in our system, and also help keep our doctors in province), and for academic/vocational education (BC tuition rates are the highest in Canada apparently, and keep rising while student loans are harder and less to receive).

On top of that, there will be many happy people legally smoking pot and not turning into bloody alcoholics or highly-stimulated/down drones (the bipolar effect of coffee, thanks Timmy's!
). We would be lead by progressive thinkers, politicians, architects, engineers, artists, etc etc... Police would focus on real crime and not steal someone's dope and/or imprison them for wanting to be happy and free.

It would be an ideal province, just because of the legalization of a HERB. But those stiffs in Ottawa fear us and our progressive thinking. On top of that, the Americans have already made clear threats to us that they will cut off the border if we legalize marijuana in Canada (but is this not a violation of NAFTA?).

Damn, made myself all giddy with these thoughts of freedom going through my mind...


EDIT: I just want to say that the best way to deal with drug problems on an individual basis is to provide education. Best way to reform a prisoner is to give them a trade so they can actually have a chance to do something, so if somebody does too much drugs and can't progress in the world, give them some kind of academic, artistic or vocational training and they will succeed and benefit us all while still maintaining their own freedom and opinion to do as they wish for themselves.
edit on 17-12-2010 by Dimitri Dzengalshlevi because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 09:47 AM
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I think the ex-Minister made a mistake when he was pressed on the issue of how it might work. He said that people could perhaps buy coc aine on a Saturday night from a chemist. That was a very poorly thought out response from someone in his position. I think it is the sticking point though. Everyone knows that prohibition does not work but coming up with a good alternative is very difficult. We don't want people to be able to buy coke from the chemist do we? I don't and I want legalisation.

So the alternative is to have specialist GPs - obviously without funding the drugs on the nhs. Someone made the point yesterday about how expensive it would be to offer heroin alone on the nhs and I don't see why we shouldn't make heroin addicts pay for the heroin they use - they do already, right?

I like the idea that people who want amphetamines (and they are sort of the problem drug for me) would have to make it known to a specialist that they wanted to obtain them. Clean drugs could be administered and problem users could be directed towards programs to help them. However, I still don't really know how it would work. It's not like you are ill and are requesting medicine. I couldn't imagine how you would have GP controlled alcohol sales but that's sort of what we are talking about. It's a very tricky issue but I'm glad to see it's getting talked about.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 09:50 AM
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In my opinion all drugs should be regulated. Soft drugs like those derived from the cannabis plant should be completely decriminalized where as hard drugs like coc aine,opium and heroin ect...Should be prescribed by a doctor with progressively smaller and smaller doses over months or years what ever is mutually decided upon by you and you're doctor.You're prescription would be filled at the pharmacy.You're soft drugs such as coffee,cigarettes and other tobacco related products,alcohol,and any cannabis derived material such as , bud,honey oil,hash,hash oil and grass oil etc...
Other drugs should be classed and should fit into a category.Like class 1 doctor prescribed.Class 2 sold to any one of age through a regulated store.This keeps the dealer off the streets and the junkies monitored by a doctor.
They should be provided clean needles and regular check ups.This is to prevent disease and improper use.
They should be also provided the drug by the government if they can't afford it themselves if proven there is a self destructive habit present..Believe me this is better for everyone less social crime less disease less incarceration less taxes. Everyone wins. Just think of what it costs to keep someone in jail for a year.It blows my mind you can buy stocks in prisons. That is just sick ,the more they jail the more money they make from the stock in the corporate prisons.There is just something seriously wrong about that.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 09:57 AM
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reply to post by Dimitri Dzengalshlevi
 


Ok now i understand you now yea unmolested it would be fine but cocane in powdered form very bad.It is true that natives have used it medicinally for thousands of years chewing the leaves to elevate a headache etc...
And yes I'm really enjoying this thread too. Too bad some people are propaganda programed to hate some thing they know nothing about. They should do some research!



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 10:21 AM
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reply to post by SeaWind
 


I can't agree with you more. A star to you.

It seems that the government sees the clean and sober population as a threat to their agenda.

If governments can make drugs illegal and then legal, then they surely possess the power to make it mandatory to where citizens must be on drugs to keep them under control.

"You don't need to work. You don't need to better yourself. We'll make that decision for you. Go smoke this crack and shut up."



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 10:38 AM
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Originally posted by enament
reply to post by Dimitri Dzengalshlevi
 


Ok now i understand you now yea unmolested it would be fine but cocane in powdered form very bad.It is true that natives have used it medicinally for thousands of years chewing the leaves to elevate a headache etc...
And yes I'm really enjoying this thread too. Too bad some people are propaganda programed to hate some thing they know nothing about. They should do some research!


Coke itself is a numbing agent. It's called "gumming" when you rub your gums with coke, and it numbs your mouth. An experienced user can also judge the purity this way also.

Powdered form is still acceptable, in my opinion. The only problem with coc aine is that it is way too easy for anyone to make into crack, which is not the same and is very bad. I call coc aine a soft drug because, for one, that's what it is "marketed" as, and two it is a "party drug" that has short-term effects.

There's this movie called "The Boys and Girls Guide To Getting Down". It really explains the difference between "party drugs" and "sketchy drugs" in an entertaining, yet very real way. I highly suggest people watch this movie to get an understanding of social culture if they don't have interesting enough lives to learn about drugs first-hand.



posted on Dec, 17 2010 @ 10:49 AM
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reply to post by Dimitri Dzengalshlevi
Cocaine is a powdered substance taken straight out of the cocoa plant. Chemicals don't come into the mix until you add baking soda, then it becomes crack coc aine.


The common form of coc aine or "powder" is not straight from the leaves of the coca plant. It's a complex process to make it into a form to ingest in the nasal passages. The coca is extracted with kerosene, sulfuric acid and other chemicals. To make it water soluble, or "snortable", the paste that is produced by the previous step is then mixed with hydrocloric acid.

To get it back to a form that can be smoked, it is mixed with baking soda and water then heated.

Cocaine is an evil chemical. It may have a use but it's not recreational.
edit on 17/12/10 by Intelearthling because: (no reason given)



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