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Obama Addresses Drug Legalization at Cartagena Summit [FEATURE]

The Cartagena summit saw an historic discussion of drug legalization this weekend, with President Obama conceding that the topic is a legitimate one even as he reiterated US opposition to legalization. Chronicle feature story here.

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The United States effort to

The United States effort to wage war against drugs has gone on for many years. This war has cost billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars, incarcerated thousands, but has not successfully eliminated the "drug problem". American Opinion is starting to shift in the past decade toward legalization of marijuana, with many states allowing medical marijuana usage, the percentage of americans who want all out legalization is above 50%. Decriminalization of drug offenses would be a good idea, since the majority of drug offenses are non-violent crimes that pose little danger to society. It costs over 40k to incarcerate and take care on an inmate for one year. This is a serious drain on the economies of the states. In regards to economics, keeping drugs illegal is actually benifiting the cartels and organized crime. Demand is high in North America and other countries, and the illegality of drugs ensures that supply is lessened which raises the price of the very inexpensively produced drugs. Cartel and organized crime leaders who are hiding and protected in South America, know economics and if drugs were legal their profits from trafficing drugs would drop significantly. By keeping drugs illegal, the United States and other countries are actually supporting to a great degree the profit of cartels. Some of the opponents to legalization argue that the legalization of drugs would result in an increase in adddicts. But we have no evidence in our history to prove the validity of this arguement. But, I am confident that the American people are more than capable of being well informed about drug use through D.A.R.E. programs and Health classes, to be able to make a decision on whether or not they will use drugs recreationally. It should be left to the individual to make this choice, not the government and the government should recognize its failing role in trying to regulate and outlaw the drug trade, coupled with the increasing public support of legalization, which will eventually dictate who the public will vote into office. The way things are going now, the next president, govenor, representative elected to office will probably have to take a pro-legalization stance to be a winner of the public vote.


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