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Legalization and Taxation Of All Drugs

BookemistThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. posted this thread...
Sept. 17, 2012 at 12:31 am

I've recently come across an idea that fascinates me: the legalisation and taxation of all drugs. Not just "soft" drugs like pot. All drugs. 
I'm not saying I necessarily agree that all drugs should be legalized- I recognize some serious issues with the plan- but I think it's definitely an interesting idea. It might even be the best plan. Here's my perspective.
The War On Drugs is ineffective. No matter how long the jail sentences are, no matter how many search dogs they use, no matter how hard the authorities try to stem the supply, people get drugs of all kinds in pretty abundant quantitites. All the War on Drugs seems to do is drive up the drugs' prices; making drug dealers insanely rich, thus giving them incentive to keep on dealing. It also puts innocent people- people with a recongnized medical problem, people that need treatment- into jail, and often sentencing is stricter depending on their race. Obviously this system is not working.
If heroin or cocaine or meth was legal tomorrow, how many of you would go out and try it? While the risk of jail time is certainly somewhat a deterrent to trying drugs, it isn't much of one. If anything, it just drives addicts underground where they can't get help. People who want to use drugs are already using them. The vast majority of people who don't use drugs when it's illegal still won't use them when they're legal. If legalizing drugs doesn't significantly increase the number of people using them, and it allows people who will use them regardless to be aboveground, then what's the advantage to keeping drugs illegal?
Finally, why is it the government's business what people do to their own bodies? The Declaration of Indepence declares the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. If my neighbor decides that in his pursuit for happiness, he's going to spend the night high out of his mind, I couldn't care less, and I don't see why anyone else should either. If you argue that he will drive or do another activity where he could injure someone else due to his drugged state, I agree that would be a problem, but so what? We would have laws against driving high just like we have laws against driving drunk. And again, the people who want to drive high are already driving high.
Legalizing drugs would take the production away from shady organizations, people who are often associated with crime and extortion, and into giant corporations like Coca Cola or Microsoft. This would put shady dealers out of business overnight; giant corporations could sell drugs at a fraction of the price, even with taxes. 
Speaking of taxes, the taxes generated from a thriving drug business could be used to do any number of things; including operating clinics to help drug addicts recover.
That's about it. I'd love some other ideas.

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sorla replied...
Sept. 17, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Right on, man. The war on drugs isn't helping anything, and we're only making foreign cartels rich and gluttonous. I've seen first hand the violence associated with drug cartels, and drug dealers. It's like something out of a Tarantino movie, it's nuts. If we start growing pot in the states, the price will go down, we will put the cartels out of business, provide jobs for Americans, and save millions of dollars on law enforcement and all the bull sh.it that goes into making busts. Hemp can be used to make paper, rope, and clothing, and is greener then cutting down trees or growing cotton. Not to mention we would save lives, of farmers in latin America, of teens and addicts on our own turf, and even our law enforcement who get killed more often then people want to admit. Legalize it!

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CollinF replied...
Sept. 18, 2012 at 6:57 pm

Smh. Bad idea.

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TheKingThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Sept. 18, 2012 at 9:32 pm

As a libertarian, it is my opinion it is entirely ones own choice what to do with their own bodies.  The drug war is doing more damage to us financially, morally, and nationally then drugs by themselves could ever do.
 
In the words of Adam Savage "I believe making drugs illegal is stupid and damageing to us as a country"
 
It is my opinion that drugs, in all their forms, should be legalized.

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BookemistThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Sept. 19, 2012 at 12:11 pm

CollinF: Want to elaborate on that? XD

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TheKingThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Sept. 20, 2012 at 11:11 am

Yo! Collin! I don't much debate religion anymore, but this here seems like a fun topic to discuss, so come back and defend thine position!

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Breece6 replied...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 6:05 am

Bookemist:
 
Hi again :D
 
On Topic:
 
I think that legalizing Marijuana would be okay, it's not much worse than alcohol honestly.  
 
However some of the heavier stuff like c.ocaine and M.eth and shiz like that, I'm not sure.  You see, when it comes to stuff like that you really don't know how you're going to react, some people can die on their very first time doing it because their bodies simply don't tolerate that kind of substance a.buse.  
 
You could argue, "well people can be allergic/intolerant to other legal substances as well"  but it's usually a lot more serious with drugs.  
 
I can honestly see no reason for a medical prescription to m.eth or c.ocaine anyways, m.arijuana I could feasibly see, but I don't have a problem with legalizing it.

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BookemistThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 9:38 pm

Breece6: I agree that cocaine and meth and other hard drugs can be incredibly destructive-much more so than pot- but to come back to my main point, having these drugs be illegal doesn't stop people from acquiring them anyway, so what's the point of wasting money on the drug war? Might as well legalize 'em all and treat addicts like patients, not criminals, no?

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Nick_Xao replied...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 10:40 pm

Okay, here's the thing that, forgive me, "kids" aren't grasping yet. What you do with your money? Your body? Your time? Not the government's business, yeah. What you do to others is the problem. Hard drugs are dangerous because of the effects they have on you, and addicts are dangerous becaue of their unpredicatbilitiy. You aren't grasping the fact that your actions have reprecussions beyond you; people who do hard drugs aren't gonna stay home, tie themselves to the bed, and wig out. They impair your ability to function, react, and exist, and while you're impaired, it endangers people around you. This is why you owning a gun is fine, and waving said gun in public is not, why you drinking is fine and yet drunk driving is illegal, and why free speech is okay and yet hate crimes are illegal. When you start endangering everyone around you for your habits, its no longer an individual issue. The tax revenue from illegal revenue is not only accounted for, but insignificant by comparision to the spending you would have to do to combat all the problems you raised by legalizing it. 



Oh, and its incredibly morally reprehensible to legalize hard substance abuse. 

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BookemistThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 11:17 pm

Nick: I agree with plenty of what you said, but I'm still not convinced.
Let's deal with your second point first. Who are you to say what's morally reprehensible, and make that into law? Tacking that on damaged the rest of your argument, imho.
True, people on hard drugs do endanger others; but they do this even when drugs are illegal. If drugs were legalized, there would be just as strict penalties for say, driving while on meth, as for drunk driving; probably even stricter. Likewise, being dangerously high in public would be a criminal offense. Beyond that, when one walks in a bad neighborhood, I see plenty of alcholic homeless guys passed out on the sidewalk, having drunk legally. If it's legal for someone to get drunk out of there mind, people should be able to do the same with other drugs.
Can you provide specific examples, besides driving, where where drugs specifically would cause a public problem? The only things I can think of are things which already carry stiff penalties like assault, murder, rape etc.

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human6 replied...
Sept. 22, 2012 at 8:42 am

Timeline of drugs in America:
 
1. the US funds the contras, who grow coke in Nicoragua 
 
2. CIA agents sell drugs to kids in the ghetto and use the profits to fund the contras
 
3. Reagan outlaws crack, and begins to use prisons as slave holes for corporations.
 
prison labor is slave labor

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Breece6 replied...
Sept. 22, 2012 at 12:19 pm

Bookemist:
 
Well, "Having these drugs be illegal doesn't stop people from acquiring them anyway"  I'm not sure that's entirely true to be honest.  
 
I go to a high school where m.arijuana is very common and easy to obtain and many of my friends smoke it.  However being as close to my friends as I am, I am aware that c.ocaine and m.eth are not nearly as common (where I live at least) compared to Marijuana, simply becaues Marijuana is literally just a plant.  There's all kinds of stuff in c.ocaine and m.eth, it's not easy to make, and it goes for a high price.  
 
More importantly though, it's not easy to make the amount of c.ocaine or m.eth necessary to justify spending the amount of money on the materials needed to make it without making it very obvious where your lab is.  If you've every seen "Breaking Bad" (which portrays the production of m.eth in a very realistic way) you'll know that there are many telltale signs of production.  So people do get caught, it is hard to make it, it is hard to find a relialbe source of it.  
 
If we do legalize it though, it should definitely have the same "21 or over" age limit that alcohol has.

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sorla replied...
Sept. 22, 2012 at 2:32 pm

Nick: 
Well, people that do crazy things on drugs are the same people that do crazy things while sober. Not many people realize that even while under the influence, you're still yourself, with the same values and morals. I would NEVER harm anyone who hadn't meant me harm, and it wouldn't change no matter how high I was. Then there are people that are naturally aggressive, and yes, they can be dangerous, but the drugs aren't to blame. It's the person's disposition. The only thing that is altered with drugs is how you feel. You still function in more or less the same way, but you can become happier, slower, more energetic, tired, euphoric, perceptive, etc... It all depends on how the individual reacts to their drug of choice, and everyone is different. 
 
Human:
Don't forget how we used to mass produce hemp alongside tobacco and cotton!!! (My favorite history lesson, the birth of a nation... and marijuana XD)
 
Breece: 
Just at a curiosity, why do you think there should be an age limit? 

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BookemistThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Sept. 22, 2012 at 10:54 pm

Breece6: This is a little off topic, but the 21 and over limit on alcohol has always bemused me. Once you turn 18, you can go to jail for life, be executed by the state, you have to pay taxes, you can vote in local and federal elections, and you can serve in the armed forces. . . yet you can't enjoy a certain kind of beverage.
To adress your other point, I acknowledge that that's right to a certain extent. But people still make meth and cocaine, and it's still incredibly profitable. There are thousands of people addicted to really hard drugs like heroin, meth, cocaine; just because they're uncommon at your highschool (or mine, for that matter) doesn't mean there aren't still many addicts.
Nick: Please. You can make that same argument about literally everything. Any activity I choose to engage in as a private citizen can have a negative effect on someone somewhere if you go far enough down the line; up to and including emptying my bowels.
I agree that people on drugs are more likely to flip out and commit murder, rape, assault, etc. while they're under the influence, but these crimes would still be punished harshly. And again, people will get high and hurt others whether or not their drug of choice is legal.
I'm not sure I read your last point correctly, but if I did, it's just plain wrong. the war on drugs costs much, much more than the cost of legalizing it, especially because legalizing it would bring in taxes, while the war on drugs sucks up money and produces nothing but dead cops and a lot of prison inmates.
sorla: I agree with the spirit of what you're saying, but that's not necessarily true. A drunk driver would never hit someone on a crosswalk in broad daylight if they weren't drunk. Likewise, people who are completely rational when not high can become raging, dangerous lunatics when they are.

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BookemistThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Sept. 22, 2012 at 10:56 pm

Breece6: This is a little off topic, but the 21 and over limit on alcohol has always bemused me. Once you turn 18, you can go to jail for life, be executed by the state, you have to pay taxes, you can vote in local and federal elections, and you can serve in the armed forces. . . yet you can't enjoy a certain kind of beverage.
To adress your other point, I acknowledge that that's right to a certain extent. But people still make meth and cocaine, and it's still incredibly profitable. There are thousands of people addicted to really hard drugs like h.eroin, m.eth, c.ocaine; just because they're uncommon at your highschool (or mine, for that matter) doesn't mean there aren't still many addicts.

Nick: Please. You can make that same argument about literally everything. Any activity I choose to engage in as a private citizen can have a negative effect on someone somewhere if you go far enough down the line; up to and including emptying my bowels.
I agree that people on drugs are more likely to flip out and commit murder, r.ape, assault, etc. while they're under the influence, but these crimes would still be punished harshly. And again, people will get high and hurt others whether or not their drug of choice is legal.
I'm not sure I read your last point correctly, but if I did, it's just plain wrong. the war on drugs costs much, much more than the cost of legalizing it, especially because legalizing it would bring in taxes, while the war on drugs sucks up money and produces nothing but dead cops and a lot of prison inmates.

sorla: I agree with the spirit of what you're saying, but that's not necessarily true. A drunk driver would never hit someone on a crosswalk in broad daylight if they weren't drunk. Likewise, people who are completely rational when not high can become raging, dangerous l.unatics when they are.

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human6 replied...
Sept. 22, 2012 at 11:24 pm

I oppose the drug war because its bassically a way to maintain racism and the prilidge of white america

If theirs one thing I've learned living in border between Paterson and Fair Lawn its that white people hate to get our hands dirty. Everyone does drugs, buys pro.stitutes and other shit, but we hate them and so we outsource the work to brown and poor people, which we then use to justify gentrification and the drug war. While knowing that we are the ones buying it.

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human6 replied...
Sept. 22, 2012 at 11:29 pm

I had a great post and then forgot to copy it and it got lost.
gist of it:
 
White America hates to get its hands dirty, everyone does dru.gs and other stuff we consider immoral, but we hide it buy pushing it, like a child  hiding a broken vase, into the hidden corner, where it can rot while we can keep the illusion of purity. But in reality it is we who buy most drugs, pr.ostitutes and p.orn, and this secret, which we can't bear makes us engage in a war against it, to push the guilt away. This is the hipocrasy of white middle class America, a painting of an angel with a devil just beneath.

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human6 replied...
Sept. 22, 2012 at 11:29 pm

I had a great post and then forgot to copy it and it got lost.
gist of it:
 
White America hates to get its hands dirty, everyone does dru.gs and other stuff we consider immoral, but we hide it buy pushing it, like a child  hiding a broken vase, into the hidden corner, where it can rot while we can keep the illusion of purity. But in reality it is we who buy most drugs, pr.ostitutes and p.orn, and this secret, which we can't bear makes us engage in a war against it, to push the guilt away. This is the hipocrasy of white middle class America, a painting of an angel with a devil just beneath.

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Breece6 replied...
Sept. 24, 2012 at 6:07 am

Sorla:
 
I know it's not always the case, but I'd say that at least generally, adults tend to be more mature than teenagers.  I think that being influenced in the way drugs and alcohol do to you warrant a "maturity limit" and since there's no such thing an age limit is the best choice we've got I'd say.  
 
Ooh, had another idea, what if whenever you had an accident relating to intoxicating substances, it went on a record that's represented somehow on your ID, and if you had too many (not sure what a good number would be) accidents then you would get different restrictions and suspensions from buying intoxicating substances.  
 
Anyways,
 
Bookemist:
 
Yeah, that always seemed weird to me, but honestly if the number doesn't matter so much to me as the concept itself (which I explained my view on to Sorla above)
 
True enough about there still being addicts, all I know is that I'd want a much more educated and knowledgeable person about all the legal and statistical truths and aspects about this to make the decision rather than me.
 
Human:
 
I think what you meant to say when you said "the white ruling class" is "every human everywhere that ever lived" because everything you just described about people covering stuff up and being hypocritical is pretty much human nature.  I don't think I've ever met a single person in my life who hasn't expressed those attributes in one way or another.  And moreover, you can't lump everyone in the "white middle class" into one opinion, there are plenty of white middle class people who are at opposite ends of the political spectrum with vasty differing opinions.  

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Nick_Xao replied...
Sept. 24, 2012 at 12:28 pm

Sorla: Going out on a limb and saying you're in favor of our good friend Mary Jane, right? I don't have a problem with that. Actually, legalization of that I'd be fine with. It has low negative phyiscal consequences, and a lower over-all tendancy to cause crimes other than mishandling of machinery. So yeah, power to you. Hard stuff is a different matter all together. THAT is the stuff that can't and should never be legalized.
 
Booke: Please? Please what? Yeah, things you do as a private citizen can have negative effects when you go down the line, but hard drugs have immediate, severe, and dire negative consequences on people around you. Kinda different from relieving yourself. Do you really think that the IRS and US governemtnt don't take black market profits into consideration when calculating the US economy? News flash; the govenment, while not perfect, isn't as dumb as you think. They take the idea of those profits into consideration, and frankly, they aren't worth the public panic, outrage, and disorder that would cause. In your ideal world, junkies are guys who have problems, are non-violent, ect. but the DEA, and those cops you talk about, are not fighting addicts, they fight the violent organizations that supply and deal those drugs. They have to, because those are bad people, and most of them don't use their own product. Legalize it and you think those organizations will just go away?

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