Prohibition hasn’t ever worked, so why aren’t drugs legalised and heavily regulated like booze and cigs?

Prohibition hasn’t ever worked, so why aren’t drugs legalised and heavily regulated like booze and cigs?

What do you think?


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  1. Because the prison industrial complex is worth billions if not trillions. It’s not a coincidence that the United States has 25% of the world’s prisoners (they have more than any country at 2million.

    It’s not a coincidence that most of these people are black and Latino.

    It’s not a coincidence that when arrested, US citizens are not protected by the constitution and thus no longer are protected by the 13th amendmentyou know what that means? [Legalised slavery]( yay!! (Yes that picture is from 2021 and not 1850).

    There’s a great documentary on Netflix called “Crack: Cocaine, Corruption & Conspiracy” which explains the war on drugs and how it all basically comes down to $ and power and corruption based on racism, greed and control which has been perpetrated throughout us history by people in power.

  2. Because by keeping drugs illegal, politicians can act like they’re doing something useful for easy votes, police departments can justify their bloated budgets, and the for profit prison system can keep their jails full. ‘Undesireable’ minority populations can be kept down, their organizers can be arrested and harassed, and it’s all socially acceptable because drug use is considered a vice. Police have even been caught planting drugs on the people they’re arresting, and nothing comes of it because it’s considered to be for the greater good.

  3. Because the us (assuming) has moved away from science and reason due to a lack of empathy and rise of conservatism where you lie about your behavior and judge others but do it in secret. Then when you get caught, you make a big show about god and forgiveness and expect people to buy it.

  4. Idk, some of them (key word, SOME) are just too dangerous for society. If youre so tweaked out on bath salts youre eating people’s faces, that shouldn’t be encouraged to do on a grand scale.

    That said, I’m against the over all criminality of it. Its more of a mental health issue than a criminal one and needs sentences of therapy and change in the overall social system that creates addicts, but that wont happen because:

    The actual reason is the the US runs on slave labor and always has. Instead of plantations, we have prisons now. Create harsh, needless sentences for an ounce of weed and bam, steady flow of slave labor. Easy free money for the 1%. And the public will applaud you for it bc how dare those evil evil criminals get away with it! They should have to work off their “debt” to society! Its simply JUSTICE! (/s for the sarcasm inept lol)

  5. Alcohol can’t be banned completely because of how easy it is to make it out of a very wide range of ingredients. Steps are being taken to ban cigarettes. Some countries already have laws that restrict people born after a certain year from ever purchasing them.

    Also what do you mean it hasn’t ever worked? It works pretty well in other countries.

  6. Follow the money

    There is tons of money being thrown around in the name of the war on drugs. Then for every organization profiting, there are many suppliers and logistics company profiting as well. Prisons, police, Coast Guard, pharmaceutical companies, Customs. Most any of these can scream war on drugs and get more funding for people and supplies. They don’t want that gravy train to dry up

  7. It’s all a cost analysis government have noted that having some drugs be illegal is an easy way to remove significant amounts of minorities or undesirables and use them as legal slave labor. This value out ways the assumed value from things like taxes on legal drug sales. This should show just how much government values isolation of “undesirables” because drug taxation basically prints money.

  8. It’s all a cost analysis government have noted that having some drugs be illegal is an easy way to remove significant amounts of minorities or undesirables and use them as legal slave labor. This value out ways the assumed value from things like taxes on legal drug sales. This should show just how much government values isolation of “undesirables” because drug taxation basically prints money. So in that way prohibition is working just as intended.

  9. If you go back a bit more than 100-150 years they were. But then officials started noticing they could criminalize whole groups of people by criminalizing drugs they used that other groups didn’t. It became a way to make being a certain type of person illegal without saying the racist part out loud.

    In the mid-to late 1800s opium addiction was a HUGE problem in China. At this time the British Empire was acting essentially as a drug cartel growing TONS of opium in India and selling it China for enormous profits. Opium was enormously addictive and the British had created a drug epidemic that was wreaking havoc on Chinese society and economy. China had tried to crackdown on the British importing opium, but the Brits went to war against China over it (twice) and their military superiority allowed them to absolutely dominate China and forced China to accept the Brits unloading tons of opium onto the Chinese market. The collapse of the Chinese economy (among other factors) led a lot of Chinese people to emigrate, looking for better work opportunities and better lives. Many emigrated to the US through California.

    Jumping over to the US, after the Civil War (1860s) there was a big push to blanket the continent in railroads (heavily subsidized by government spending). On the west coast a lot of the labor for building the railroads came from Chinese immigrants who were willing to work for VERY low wages (there was also a ton of exploitation, but that’s a different story). Word of available work and better living conditions spread back to China, which led to more people immigrating to the US. As happens pretty much everywhere there’s large scale immigration, Chinses immigrants tended to live close to each other in areas where they could maintain familiar traditions, customs, culture, etc. (This is where Chinatowns first came from.) Well, the white Americans who ran the government weren’t too keen on a bunch of foreigners coming in, speaking a different language, eating different foods, dressing in different clothing, and generally not being white Christians. But the Chinese weren’t doing anything illegal. They were just living their lives. The government couldn’t legally do anything to oppress them, so they looked for other ways. One thing they noticed about these Chinese immigrants is that a LOT of them used opium (since it was so prevalent back in China) but very few non-Chinese people did. It was also very easy for police and other officials to have a “reasonable suspicion” of opium. Just claim you smelled it (whether you did or not) and that allowed you to do all kinds of things like search persons, buildings, etc. So the government of California started passing laws making the use, sale, and possession of opium illegal. Police then used this as a pretense to crackdown on Chinese communities. Just harassing them was enough to make them feel not welcome (remember, this was the late 1800s/early 1900s, they were not shy about being racist as fuck), but if the police found opium (either legitimately or planted) they then had reason to arrest and imprison Chinese people.

    Of course, US business interests still wanted Chinese people in the country. They needed the cheap labor. But the racists in charge in the US didn’t want Chinese people *acting* Chinese or otherwise being noticed. Much in the same way Jim Crow laws were being built in the South to oppress newly freed black people while still creating economic conditions which forced them to sell their labor at poverty wages, opium laws in California were being used to do essentially the same thing to Chinese immigrants in California (with a lot of caveats that there are also many differences in the two situations).

    Fast forward to the 1910s in Texas. There had always been a population of Spanish-speaking people of Mexican heritage in Texas and the rest of the Southwest. This whole area had been part of Mexico until the 1840s, after all. But when it was Mexico it was rather sparsely populated, and most of the Mexican-American population lived in more rural areas and weren’t concentrated in cities so much. This changed in the 1910s. The Mexican Revolution caused enormous political, social, and economic upheaval in Mexico, especially northern Mexico near the American border. This drove a flood of refugees across the border, especially into Texas. Just like with Chinese immigrants in California, Mexican immigrants in Texas began to settle in communities with other Mexican immigrants where they could continue practicing their culture, traditions, speaking their language, etc. Again, like the Chinese in California, the Mexicans weren’t doing anything illegal, but the racist White people in charge in Texas were looking for a reason to oppress them. Cannabis had long been in widespread use in the US, but it was usually consumed as a liquid in tinctures, teas, and medicines. Americans did not often smoke cannabis. Mexicans, and Mexican immigrants, did, though. So just like the Californians outlawed opium as an excuse to crack down on Chinese immigrants, Texas outlawed cannabis as an excuse to crack down on Mexicans. They even went so far as to start using the Spanish word “marijuana” rather than cannabis to make it seem more foreign and scary to white Americans. (This is why the word marijuana is so much more common today than cannabis.)

    Later the cannabis prohibition went national, but there wasn’t a sizeable enough population of Mexicans in most of the US to really up the scare factor for white Americans. There was another population that *did* scare white Americans and also tended to smoke cannabis (as opposed to using it in medicines and teas), though. Namely, black Americans. The press started spreading stories about how smoking cannabis made black people aggressive, violent, and prone to raping white women. There were Congressional hearings in which “experts” presented fabricated evidence to “prove” that smoking cannabis made black people violent and prone to committing rape. This led to the first law effectively criminalizing cannabis in 1937, and the first law outright banning it (along with a number of other drugs) in 1970.

    These two (opium and cannabis) started the trend of banning drugs in the US and created the framework under which the default was to ban drugs unless there was a compelling reason to leave them legal rather than leaving them legal unless there was a compelling reason to regulate them. The same tactic of banning a drug to crack down on people who used it was used with hallucinogens (LSD, mushrooms, etc) against the anti-Vietnam war protesting hippies in the 70s and black crack cocaine users in the 80s. The Nixon administration started (and the Reagan administration intensified) the War on Drugs ostensibly as a way to reduce crime, but the real reason (as stated by members of both administrations) was to create a reason to arrest black people and left wing activists, both of which used cannabis and other “illegal” drugs at higher rates than conservatives.

  10. Some drugs are narcotics which are really dangerous. Also drugs like cocaine, meth, and heroin encourage really violent behavior, and that’s dangerous to the public. Otherwise, drugs with prescriptions are allowed because an expert said you could have them.

  11. What does ‘work’ mean? Didn’t we have the headline this weak that legalization of cannabis does increase usage?

    So in the sense that prohibition keeps user numbers lower than legalization, it seems to work. It just doesn’t work as a zero case policy.

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