Thursday, August 31, 2006

Drugs are bad, m'kay?

Given the recent media coverage of the legalisation issue due to the Merchants Quay drug centre hosting Jerry Cameron, an FBI trained former US chief of police and current head of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), I think it's only fair to comment on how both for and against legalisiation camps are both in someway missing the mark.

Now me shock some by saying I believe there is no such thing as a 'drugs problem' in society, the issue really is why do people have to turn to drugs? Therefore drug abuse should be dealt with as a health and welfare issue and not a criminal issue. Funneling the money wasted on fighting the war against drugs towards building better community care for the disaffected would go a lot further than throwing it on some fight that can never be won.

Now before those against legalisation fall off their chairs let me point out that just legalising every drug and using the tax money to fund better rehab programs etc is not enough. It would be very near sighted to do that without due care.

Currently if a person wants to drive a car, which is a very dangerous piece of machinery as can be seen by the many road deaths every week, they need to procure a licence after getting many lessons and passing an eye test. Therefore should a person wish to purchase a substance which can seriously harm them and others around them they should be required to have a 'drugs licence'. Obviously the granting of which would be dependant upon psychological and physical screening, even for more mundane drugs like cannabis. This would also be a very effective way of limiting and monitoring usage.

As for heroin the current system of methadone treatment solves nothing. Methadone, which many users report, is actually more addictive than heroin and is far more potent.
So for heroin,cocaine and other seriously addictive drugs should people wish to purchase with a licence then they must also attend a drug rehabilitation program until they are no longer addicted. Failure to attend means licence is revoked. There is also the option of using an inhibitor like GABA-transaminase which will negate any effects of the narcotics permanently rendering the ingestion of an opiate by an addict pointless.

The argument for a 'drugs licence' is one I have never heard before but I think it goes someway to addressing the concerns of both the pro and against camps.

And one other thing, we should never tolerate people like MEP Eoin Ryan and Grainne Kenny (the international president of anti-drugs organisation EURAD) for playing politics with peoples health. No doubt Eoin Ryan has to look to be tough on certain issues to his constituents and his party (that state being sued by cancer patients line is just plain ridiculous!) but both of them should be big enough to listen to the pro legalisation argument from experts such as Jerry Cameron and the Merchant Quay.


Anonymous George Mall said...

You make a good point, but you fail to understand the disease of addiction. There is no cure, yet it has been confirmed in the medical world as a disease. It is genetic, and addicts ( this is only 10 % of people who use drugs, 20 % abuse drugs, and 70 % use recreationally.) That is to say, the 70 % who use recreationaly will do so successfully ( without harming themselves or others), the 20 % who abuse drugs will cause some form of harmto themselves or others, but when faced with consequences are able to stop. The 10 % who have the disease of addiction will use drugs even when faced with consequences. One does not go to a rehabilitation centre to be cured of addiction. One goes into a rehab because he has reached "rock bottom" and needs to be entered into a program, where he learns that he can not do drugs again.

Thursday, March 12, 2009 4:56:00 p.m.  
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