War on Drugs: Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop
So the Global Commission on Drug Policy has released a report stating that the War on Drugs is a fail. Welcome to the party, sirs, you’re 40 years late but please, sit. What clued you in on this failure? The wasted dollars, the overflowing prisons, lives lost, lack of actual resources dedicated to rehabilitating addicts?
America thrives on the drug trade. Its capitalism, and therefore imperialism are so tightly intertwined with the drug trade that it’s hard to tell one from another. The failing “war on drugs” has kept capitalism afloat by creating a permanent lower class. A lower class that is essential to the continued growth and flourishing of capitalism. To actually win this war would require some self-sacrifice on the part of the system and that’s really not happening any time soon.
Drugs are one of the most profitable of capitalism’s cheap commodities. How can a system so dependent on a product seek to destroy it? So there are two ways to consider this. We are unlikely to succeed in a war on drugs unless we change the way we think about drugs and drug abuse.
Understand that there is a balance between a free market and zero tolerance drug society. Reforming the current blanket prohibition policy will not cause degeneration into a free market if handled correctly. Drug addiction and abuse are public health issues and should be treated as such. Addicts and abusers are not criminals, they are sick. We need to focus on treating and rehabilitating these members of society. If that means prescribing heroin for addicts or creating a clean needle program, then by all means.
Let’s move away from the flawed notion of a drug free society. Drugs are here to stay so prohibition is not an effective anti-drug policy. It’s irresponsible to waste time, money and focus trying to eradicate a conceptual enemy.