Thursday, March 03, 2005

Bloody, awful, evil things

Marijuana is a harmless recreational vice, we're told by public opinion and the political elite. The Liberals (and, to my chagrin, the Tories to some extent as well - and obviously, certainly the NDP, Bloc and far-left fringe parties) have all been going full-steam-ahead for decriminalization recently. Harmless? Tell that to the Mounties. Can we return to hard jail time for simple possession, yet? UPDATE: Since I see this has been linked elsewhere, I probably should elaborate my position a bit. I believe that a polity which tacitly allows (or, equally, fails to condemn) drug use is doomed to suffer from criminal behaviour, whether from producers protecting their investment, or stoned users claiming no responsibility for their actions while under the influence. Every marijuana user in Canada has to know that there is blood on their hands. Their lust for the abdication of personal responsibility, the refusal to live in reality, the selfish need to search out the best high, causes demand for a product. Demand demands supply. Suppliers are willing to kill. Congratulations, hippies; you've made Canada a nation in thrall to narcoterrorists, à la Colombia. Failing the incredibly impractical and unlikely extremist-libertarian position of decriminalizing everything, there will always be illicit drugs. Letting users off the hook while promising to "get tough" on producers and importers is, at best, deluded. I would like to see simple possession punishable by multi-year jail terms, or at least heavily punitive fines; if the risk of punishment is too high, I'm sure many casual users will find a way to quit cold turkey. This is pretty much the only area where I fall so far into social conservative territory. With the other usual benchmarks (Abortion? Sure, but please try not to have to, if possible. Same-sex marriage? Go nuts, but please understand that not all of the anti- crowd are haters. Women's issues? I'd like Condi Rice on the GOP ticket in 2008, and wouldn't mind seeing Hillary Clinton running against her.) I'm fairly liberal-libertarian, but I believe any addictive substance harder than alcohol is demonstrably harmful enough - both to society at large and the individual specifically - to prohibit, and that necessarily as effectively and uncompromisingly as possible.

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