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Should the U.K. decriminalise drugs?

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Should the U.K. decriminalise drugs?

Old 6th Jan 2019, 10:24
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Should the U.K. decriminalise drugs?

Just happened to have the TV on this morning and the programme, The Big Question, came on. I found myself drawn into the debate suggesting that countries like Portugal that have decriminalised drug use, have reduced deaths from their use by 3000 a year.

My dilemma is; alcohol is legal and yet there are many more thousands a year from its use and would turning a blind eye to drug use normalise it too much?

On the other hand, by legalising the supply of heroin, cocaine etc, the authorities could remove the criminal element and reduce the price of a fix so that it no longer becomes financially viable to the cartels that control it, plus also removing the satellite activities such as prostitution, extortion and slave labour.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 10:29
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There's some stuff in here, at 1.4 (I'm not taking a position on this, just offering the debate some information).

https://www.libdems.org.uk/policy_pa...s_to_cut_crime

There's a whole bunch of research behind that, at least some of which is probably published somewhere.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 12:21
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The likes of medical cannabis oils etc definitely, it is wrong to prevent such items used in the relieving of pain in those that nothing else simply works purely on the basis the stigma of the drugs more shadowy useage.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 13:15
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Drugs? All? Maybe not the killer stuff.

Best to start with one small step.
Most everyone in government is still afraid of a green plant that is less harmful than alcohol and its own shadowy usage. Good place to start.
Lurch some attitudes out of the 1920s, 30s, 40s, 50s,60s.........
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 14:34
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Is prohibition working/effective? Or do you just have laws on the books that almost no one is enforcing?
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 14:44
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Originally Posted by BehindBlueEyes View Post
On the other hand, by legalising the supply of heroin, cocaine etc, the authorities could remove the criminal element and reduce the price of a fix so that it no longer becomes financially viable to the cartels that control it, plus also removing the satellite activities such as prostitution, extortion and slave labour.
Legalising Cannabis, Cocaine, Heroin, etc., would make no difference to any of that - if people can get it tax-free, they surely will. There's still a thriving black market in smuggling tobacco and alcohol, both of which have been legalised for centuries.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 16:18
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Originally Posted by Mostly Harmless View Post
Is prohibition working/effective? Or do you just have laws on the books that almost no one is enforcing?
Define "working" and "effective"?
More to the point, first define the objectives of prohibition; what is it supposed to achieve?
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 16:39
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Originally Posted by Random SLF View Post
Legalising Cannabis, Cocaine, Heroin, etc., would make no difference to any of that - if people can get it tax-free, they surely will. There's still a thriving black market in smuggling tobacco and alcohol, both of which have been legalised for centuries.
In that case, the Government may as well legalise it and get a bit of tax revenue where they can.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 16:45
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Originally Posted by Random SLF View Post
Legalising Cannabis, Cocaine, Heroin, etc., would make no difference to any of that - if people can get it tax-free, they surely will. There's still a thriving black market in smuggling tobacco and alcohol, both of which have been legalised for centuries.
That's because they are both heavily taxed creating a black market.
Taxing drugs heavily would negate the whole purpose of de-criminalising them in the first place. Although I wouldn't put anything past the stupid people running the show.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 16:56
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One problem that was suggested to me by a very senior policeman would be that decriminalising drugs means that a source of cash for the current drug gangs would dry up: this it is feared will lead to more violent crime. I am told that legalising cannabis in parts of the US has led to an increase in burglaries and robberies because it is now cheaper, so a small burglary gets enough cash to buy it legally.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 17:58
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Originally Posted by radeng View Post
One problem that was suggested to me by a very senior policeman would be that decriminalising drugs means that a source of cash for the current drug gangs would dry up: this it is feared will lead to more violent crime. I am told that legalising cannabis in parts of the US has led to an increase in burglaries and robberies because it is now cheaper, so a small burglary gets enough cash to buy it legally.
Thatís a good point. The criminals would just find another source of income.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 17:14
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Peter Hitchens seems to be continually highlighting that in incidents ofmas killing it is drugs which seems to always be in the background.

Decriminalising them would be a complete disaster for the drug fighting industry as how are they meant to survive if govt is not giving them millions on equipment and salaries every year.

The idea that it can't be eradicated is laughable, it is, just there isn't the will to do anything. So many people get paid off the whole way during the pipeline. Lots of Govt5, banks and financial institutions rely on dodgy cash to enable them to make money by laundering it.

If it is legalised then suggest a hospital wing to set up in each hospital. So whatever %hit you have taken then you just put you into a "cell" and monitored when you there. No expensive drugs used to keep you alive if you are a user and if you walk about then great, if carried out great.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 17:23
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If it is legalised then suggest a hospital wing to set up in each hospital
It would be quickly filled with alcoholics.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 20:37
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Yes they should. Reasons:

- Half the Police time is taken up with drug related crime.

- Decriminalising the stuff would mean it would cut out the criminal element, then the HMRC would get the tax. As with booze and flags.

- The Gov would have more control over the distribution of the stuff.

As mentioned above, there too many vested interests in keeping it illegal.

If the users want to "blow their heads off" with the stuff, let them. Hopefully before they breed. The gene pool would be enhanced somewhat, as addiction is in the genes. Like prostitution, you won't stop it, as where there is demand there will certainly be supply.
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Old 8th Jan 2019, 09:41
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Should taking hard drugs become legal how do you prevent these now law abiding citizens from flouting the law just a little bit to drive "a short distance" home from their party?
Can taking hard drugs be done responsibility and not be a threat to anyone? That evidence is extremely hard to find.

5/01/2019 14:50 - Cattletruck is on his way to band rehearsal and is second in line at the traffic lights waiting to cross a major six lane highway (with an extra 2 bus slip lanes - total 8 lanes). Being a weekend the traffic light change sequence is much slower. Traffic lights go red for highway users and cars bank up. Traffic lights go green for us and we proceed. Just before I reach the end of the intersection a vehicle that was hidden by stationary traffic has used the bus lane (8th lane) to run a red light at what I estimate to be about 85km/hr and gone between me and the car in front and managed to not to hit anyone else.

Similar thing happened a few years ago on the same road and same direction just further down when a driver high on ice ran a red light at speed and unfortunately managed to kill 3 people and permanently cripple another.
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Old 8th Jan 2019, 11:56
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The effects of alcohol can be equally devestating.
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Old 8th Jan 2019, 12:24
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Do people really believe the 'industry' that has built up around the supply of drugs would just disappear or go legit overnight?
Or that users would suddenly have the funds to obtain legal drugs? At street level cash isn't always the currency.
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Old 8th Jan 2019, 13:41
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There's a real argument for the decriminalisation of some drugs, in my opinion - but the term drugs encompasses far too many substances with a wide variety of uses and effects.

Stats show that 1 in 5 adults aged 16-26 have taken an illicit drug in the last year, that's around 20% of the population. To think that this number is going to decrease over the coming years despite decriminalisation is ludicrous, drugs are just too readily available from a number of different sources. Whether that be from your friendly local street dealer, your friend, your partner, or most commonly off the 'Dark Web'. It only takes 5 minutes to purchase some Bitcoin, transfer it over to the Dark Web and place an order on one of the many marketplaces and you'll receive your drugs through the post next day delivery.

The use of drugs such as cannabis, cocaine and MDMA spreads far and wide through society from those unemployed all the way through to professionals such as doctors, lawyers etc. These drugs, in my opinion, serve no real threat to society and there's no way of curbing their usage.

However, the hard stuff such as heroin and crack cocaine is where the heart of the problem lies. Your average university student going to a house party isn't going to be taking heroin at the weekend, they'll be taking MDMA. Burglary, theft, and other criminal activity are almost always to fund heroin/crack/synthetic habits.
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Old 8th Jan 2019, 13:42
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Probably have lots of empty high street shops turn into Relaxation Bars in the manner of vape shops and micro pubs - Cocainsbury's, Pot Shop, W H Sniffs, Toots the Chemist, etc...
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Old 8th Jan 2019, 14:46
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If you do legalize cannabis sometime in the future, watch big business and senior politicians/ ex-politicians jump into the supply end of it big time.
Hypocrites that they may be - they will clamour for a big piece of the action and market cornering but purely from the "another chance to make a lot of money" standpoint.
What regulations are put in place will have a big bias towards these corporate entities. Not really in the spirit of the plant or the nature of the users.
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