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Video: Former Mexican President Says Time to Legalize Drugs

Video from October 18 Cato Institute forum featuring former President of Mexico Vicente Fox (Cato's Ian Vasquez moderating):

Hint to politicians and the media: When people with that kind of stature bring up an issue over and over, that means it's important.
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Gart's picture

The Fox and the Mammoth

 

I have to say, I wholeheartedly share Fox’s analysis. There are two things, however, that might be worth considering. On the one hand, it is still a mystery to me why Fox did not join (or was not invited to join?) neither the Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracy, nor the Global Commission on Drug Policy, considering that Fox was expressing similar opinions well before they had published their respective reports. It is interesting to note, too, that in a similar fashion to the Latin American ex-presidents that signed both reports, Fox didn’t oppose the US drug policy while in power, either. I supposed, that’s Realpolitiks for you. (As it is always the case in politics, more daring alternative explanations have been intimated…who knows) Whatever the case, his vocal demands are most welcome.

The second thing to consider is whether Fox’s stance on drugs is guided by ulterior political motives, for although I share the questions raised by Fox regarding the current situation in Mexico, he gives no credit to recent declarations given by the current president, Felipe Calderón, both in Mexico and in the US.

Even though Calderón had in the past expressed reservations about drug legalisation, he has somewhat somehow changed his tune and he now shows a more favourable position regarding legalisation — admittedly, for political and strategic reasons, he uses “market alternatives”, but the implication is obvious. This is what he said recently:

«Consumer countries are morally obliged to reduce their vast economic demand. If you can’t cut it, cut the economic profits. You have to find how to staunch this demand. Seek out all possible options, including market alternatives, so that drugs trafficking ceases to be a source of violence in Latin America…»

I do believe that now is a golden opportunity for drug producing countries to unite around a common purpose: to put an end to Prohibition and the War on Drugs. It is time that Latin America give their unconditional support to Felipe Calderón’s call for Legalisation & Regulation to solve the so-called drug problem.

There is no doubt that rejecting or opposing Prohibition and the War on Drugs might carry huge costs in term of retaliations by the “international community”, i.e. by the US, the largest consumer of drugs in the world and the most belligerent war on drugs warrior. What we should always keep in mind is that no price can be higher than the one drug producing countries have already paid and will continue to pay as long as this insane and irrational regime remains in place.

Gart Valenc
http://www.stopthewarondrugs.org

Gart's picture

A real tour the force

The video is 70 min. long, but anybody interested in the legalisation issue, be it in favour or against, ought to listen to it in full. Q&A start around the 37min. mark.

Gart Valenc

http://www.stopthewarondrugs.org

Thoughts

It is great to see a former president to come out and speak about drug legalization, but it is too bad that he decided to do that AFTER he left the office.  I just think that presidents and politicians around the world need to grow some "cojones" and speak up, speak the truth about drugs.  People have used drugs for ages in the past, and will continue to use them forever and it is just wrong and inhumane to punish people for doing something which isn't that bad, and which isn't hurting other people.  For gods sake, drugs come from nature/plants!  How can anyone declare nature to be illegal?  Are you mightier than god to outlaw nature?  The "war on drugs" is just crazy when you really think about it.  We need to take our lives back!  Really, how free are you when you dont even have control of what to put inside your body? 

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