I was myself, until a few years ago not very keen to any type of drug policy reform.
But years passing by, I became more and more aware that our current drug policy is not working for anyone.
Only politicians who are giving the impression to be in charge and gangs are the main benefactors at this policy.
The only things that our current drugs policy does is being a massive hole for taxpayers and I am not even talking when the war on drugs which kill normal citizens, just to give the example of the current situation in Mexico.
In some regions in Mexico, the war on drugs gives the same effect as a full-blown civil war. Cities like Ciudad Juarez, which were quite prosperous in the past, had become a quasi-war zone in the recent years.
It makes the region unstable for trade or even tourism which is the bread and butter industry for many places in Mexico and Central America. It makes everyone poorer at the end and make these countries more and more in need of foreign aid in a vicious circle.
The war on drugs is also expensive, and the person who pays the bill at the end, it’s the taxpayer like you and me.
You pay for more prisons, for a more interventionist foreign policy and a state which loves to meddle more and more in our own lives as citizens and taxpayers all in the name of the common good.
So, what is exactly the solution? There is no magic solution to reform drug policy, but a few places in the world had some innovative ideas which are going well outside the box.
Take the case of marijuana. I never personally smoked marijuana myself, but it’s not a secret that many people everywhere of all ages had smoked this drug.
But if you look historically, marijuana prohibition is a bit like alcohol prohibition. Alcohol prohibition was a total failure, and doing any sort of criminal repression on this drug is a waste of time and money like it was for alcohol prohibition in the past.
Like the majority of voters in the US states of Colorado (1) and Washington had decided a few weeks ago by referendum, I do believe that the best solution is to liberalize all laws on Marijuana and sell it like alcohol. No more, no less.
For harder drugs, it’s more much complicated. But, it’s really unacceptable that someone go to prison because of the fact that they use drugs.
Instead someone who takes harder drugs should be treated as having a medical problem. Portugal had done this reform in the past, and the use of harder drugs did decreased while spending less money into prisons and related to drugs.
In conclusion, there is no perfect drug policy, but any reform will be better then the current quagmire in drug policy which many western countries have since a few decades.
Anyhow, it’s not magical thinking to think that a reform in drug policy leads to less crime, a less intrusive state in our everyday lives and more money in your pockets.
These are policies which lead to prosperity, more freedom and a better future in a free society.
(1) Note that in Colorado, more people have voted for marijuana legalization then for Obama/Biden presidential ticket.