It really is heartening to see the incredible degree to which drug policy sanity has spread throughout those who are internet-capable (especially when you think about the fact that that is where the population is heading).
Two recent examples, where opposing views in the press have both generated a lot of comments.
First, we have the two pieces in the Hill regarding the federal marijuana decrim legislation.
- Criminalization of Marijuana Must End by NORML’s Allen St. Pierre received close to 200 comments, almost universally favorable
- Marijuana Decriminalization Bill Ignores the Facts by the ONDCP received over 100 comments in opposition, including numerous powerful, intelligent critiques (and slap-downs) of this standard propaganda.
On the other side of the pond, we have former drug war functionary Julian Critchley coming out for legalization, with excellent comments all over the web, including some good responses in his piece in The Independent: All the experts admit that we should legalise drugs.
So today, drug war idiot former Chief Constable Ian Oliver, looking to sell more copies of his “Drug Affliction” book, steps up to the plate with his response in The Independent: Legalising drugs would only make matters worse. This article is greeted with derision and, again, detailed thoughtful critiques that completely dismantle Oliver’s piece.
In fact, just about all of the few pro-drug-war comments in both Independent pieces are from one commenter – Prestonian – who added to the discussion with gems like these:
I would execute all users without a second thought. … The Singaporean attitude to drugs should be adopted here – execute the dealers and long imprisonment for users. I suspect that many of the commenters here are users themselves and would like it to be made easier for them to continue.
Remember the days (I think I do) when it was assumed that those who were for legalization were almost uniformly incoherent and utterly wasted stoners? Well now, the embarrassments are mostly on the other side. People like Prestonian make others go “Woah — wait a second. If Prestonian is on the side of Ian Oliver, maybe I’d better look at the legalization side — they seem a whole lot smarter.”
It appears that supporting prohibition may be implicated in long-term reduction in intelligence.