Pubdate: Thu, 04 Jul 2002
Source: Otago Daily Times (New Zealand)
Copyright: Allied Press Limited, 2003
Author: Joseph Morahan
Bookmark: (Cannabis)
Bookmark: (Decrim/Legalization)


The most vicious legal penalties you can dream up wouldn't have saved a 
single life when Ese Junior Faleali went looking for cash. I think it's 
about time we stopped blaming drugs for addiction and its problems. Even if 
all addictive drugs were to vanish overnight, people would still find 
things to get addicted to. Gambling, violence, overwork, sport and, worst 
of all, starvation. They all harm the addict and his family. Anorexia, even 
when treated has about a 25% death rate. It is much higher untreated. So 
it's really bad, but you can imagine how stupid it would be to try to deal 
with it by making it illegal!

Let's be sensible though. Let's start with cannabis and see what happens. 
If that's OK then try some of the others. For those folks at Norml, I can 
prove that cannabis isn't addictive: just change your definition of 
addiction so that it doesn't include cannabis.

Addictions can only be dealt with by persuading people to deal with their 
problems, not by making things illegal.

Joseph Morahan