More super-silliness from across the pond

Why is it drug warriors in Britain seem to lose all capability of reason when it comes to cannabis?
Here’s the latest in sensationalist reporting on cannabis (also reported here)

Child-trafficking gangs force kids to work in cannabis factories
CRIMINAL gangs are trafficking hundreds of children into Britain and forcing them to work in cannabis factories, with at least one child per week being found by police, a report said today.
Campaign group End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and the Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes (ECPAT) said there had been a five-fold increase in the practice in the last year alone.

Now, from what little I can find about ECPAT and their “reports” from their website, this is likely a total nonsensical interpretation of an unscientifically propagandized report.
But it sure sounds scary, doesn’t it?
No. it just sounds stupid. The notion of gangs smuggling in children to farm cannabis is just too absurd. Why would they do this? What would they have these kids do?

“There is evidence that particular south-east Asian villages are targeted for specific trades, with Vietnam now known to specialise in boys for cannabis factories,” he said.

I repeat. What would they have these kids do? What is this specialized training that boys in certain south-east Asian villages are so noted for? Watering?
I’m guessing that some Vietnamese gang who is smuggling children for sexual purposes is also growing pot and that the operations are kept at the same location. (Of course, legalization would end the value of cannabis to them.) But that’s all it takes for an unscrupulous organization and an empty-headed (or perhaps agenda-driven), sensationalistic press to whip up a frenzy.
But it gets worse. Check out the fuzzy thinking here.

Police believe the problem has emerged after organised crime gangs, many of them Vietnamese, moved to dominate the British cannabis market after the narcotic was downgraded from a Class B to Class C drug in 2004.
Declassification increased the potential rewards of growing and selling cannabis but decreased the risk of punishment. One police officer was quoted as saying cannabis was the “cash machine of organised crime”.

Yes, cannabis is the cash machine. But actually I can’t imagine how decreasing the risk would have any connection to the use of children. And, in fact, declassification would make it harder to dominate the market as more players would get involved with less risk.
Here’s the topper:

“If you remove the risk, people exploit it. If you put the risk back into enforcement, they will adapt and go into another type of business,” [Simon Byrne, an assistant chief constable of Merseyside Police in north-west England and the Association of Chief Police Officers’ spokesman on cannabis] was quoted as saying.

Let’s see if I can follow his thinking. If you increase the penalties for marijuana, then the Vietnamese child-sex slave kidnapping gang that also grows marijuana, will be deterred from growing marijuana and forced to do something else.

[Thanks, Scott]
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