"Tough on Drugs" Politics Just Aren't as Popular Anymore

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The Rolling Stone piece I mentioned earlier also contains an excellent observation from drug policy expert/centrist Mark Kleiman, with regards to the new administration's pledge to respect state medical marijuana laws:

"There are two striking things about that," says Mark Kleiman, who directs the study of drug policy at UCLA. "One was that the administration thought that they could get away with it. And the other is that they did! There was no outcry, or even an attempt at an outcry. The administration clearly thinks that being 'soft on drugs' is no longer a political vulnerability. And it looks like they're right."

This perfectly illustrates the emergence of the new drug war politics. The long-standing consensus within our political culture that the public demands harsh drug laws is just pure fiction. Test that theory any way you want and it will fail to deliver every time. State-level marijuana reforms passed by colossal margins in 2008, support for legalization is polling at record levels, and legalization repeatedly emerged as America's top political issue according to public votes on the president's own website.

We are cascading towards a remarkable moment when the politics of drug policy are revealed to be far removed from what many believed them to be.
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Legalize it, tax it, end black market/violence, educate

Legalize it. Treat it like alcohol plain and simple. End black market and violence.

Once it’s legal it will be exciting for the first 3 months. After that, the people who smoke now, will probably smoke the same amount. And the people who won’t, simply won’t. Not much will change. \

I’m so sick of the Gateway Drug Argument. Alcohol is the ULTIMATE GATEWAY DRUG. It’s probably 90% of people’s first buzz. And if they like it, the want more. None of my successful friends that smoke got into heavy drugs like coke.

It's a shame that the people who get addicted and kill themselves with crack & cocaine get wrapped in the same category as an adult that want to smoke a joint on a Friday night..... What a weird world.

And if treated like alcohol. Kids will have as much access to it as a 6 pack of beer. In otherwords, if regulated, kids can’t get it.

So legalize it. And to the folks that say NO and that have never done it, what right do they have to judge it?

Kudos!

Excellent post as usual. This shift among policy makers maybe the gust of wind that topples this house of cards. I cannot wait!

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