Friday, July 24, 2009

Rationalizing the Drug War

From a Huffington Post article on marijuana in California:

"For those of us who are on the front lines, it's not about pot is bad in itself or drugs are bad," said Meredith Lintott, district attorney in Mendocino County, one of the country's top marijuana-producing regions.

"It's about the negative consequences on children. It's about the negative consequences on the environment."

We're now at the point that the people on the front lines are not even able to claim that weed is bad. They're now inventing excuses for the war on our citizens.

The negative consequences on children? A black market exists in illegal drugs. Because it's illegal, the only people (outside of the limited number of medicinal marijuana dealers in a few progressive states) that are allowed to sell it are, by definition, criminals. In the whole universe of possible ways to sell marijuana, criminals are probably the one group that is most likely to try to sell to children. The drug war is exacerbating this problem, not solving it.

And the negative consequences on the environment? Because it's illegal, growers are resorting to using national forests and wilderness areas. Because it's illegal, there are criminal enterprises who defend their crops with booby traps and weaponry, and who have no regard for the environment or the safety of the citizenry.

Why does this happen? Because of the war on drugs. The war on drugs does not happen because of this.

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