Reply To: Do we Need Some New Laws?

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The libertarian approach would be to legalize marijuana, crack and cocaine too for all people – adult and minors.

When was the last time you saw a bootlegger?

Let’s have a little history lesson.

In 1919 the government of the United States banned the manufacture, sale, and transportation of alcohol. They did this by amending the Constitution, which is the only proper way to do such an act.

John D. Rockefeller was one of the proponents of Prohibition. In 1932 he said, “When Prohibition was introduced, I hoped that it would be widely supported by public opinion and the day would soon come when the evil effects of alcohol would be recognized. I have slowly and reluctantly come to believe that this has not been the result. Instead, drinking has generally increased; the speakeasy has replaced the saloon; a vast army of lawbreakers has appeared; many of our best citizens have openly ignored Prohibition; respect for the law has been greatly lessened; and crime has increased to a level never seen before.”

He, along with most of the country, realized what a big mistake Prohibition turned out to be. In 1933 the Constitution was amended again to repeal Prohibition. Crime went down. Markedly.

In 1930 the Federal Bureau of Narcotics was created as a division of the Treasury Department. Harry J. Anslinger was named as its director. He was in favor of marijuana prohibition, but not for reasons you might imagine. He reasons were primarily racial:

“There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the US, and most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos, and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz, and swing, result from marijuana use. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers, and any others.”

In fact, at a hearing in 1937, Dr. William C. Woodward, a doctor, lawyer and Chief Counsel to the AMA said, “The American Medical Association knows of no evidence that marijuana is a dangerous drug.”

Despite Dr. Woodward’s testimony, marijuana became illegal, without benefit of a Constitutional amendment.

In 1969 President Richard Nixon declared a “War on Drugs.”

Now, more than 1 million people are arrested in American each year for drug offenses, most of which are non-violent. If the currently-illegal drugs were obtainable at your local pharmacy, there would be no need for people to make them at home, and sell them on street corners and in front of schools. The quality would most likely go up and the price down. With drugs legal and more easily affordable, people who are addicted would be able to get treatment without fear of arrest. They would be able to buy their drugs without having to resort to theft to get enough money for the currently inflated prices.

There would be no drug turf wars, just as there are no alcohol turf wars anymore. So gang violence would be reduced, as it was with the repeal of Prohibition.

There would be additional tax revenue from the legal sale of drugs.

Now, which part are you against?