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HarryinNM

Aug 22, 2009, 11:59 AM

Post #1 of 11 (5857 views)

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legalizing drug user possession

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Mexico, on Thursday, decriminalized possession of "recreational" drugs in small quantities. See:

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D9A763HO0&show_article=1

I am surprised to find no mention on this forum.

It seems to me that this may be a very significant step in the right direction, and one that should get serious consideration NOB.

Far too much of law enforcement resources, in my judgment, is squandered in investigating, apprehending, prosecuting and incarcerating the end users and addicts. These resources, applied against the drug producers and distributors, could make a very important difference in effectiveness of efforts to curtail this illegal industry.

Mexico's Legislators and President should be applauded.



esperanza

Aug 22, 2009, 12:16 PM

Post #2 of 11 (5842 views)

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Re: [HarryinNM] legalizing drug user possession

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Well, Harry...it's a step, of course, but it's a teeny weenie baby step. Nobody's too excited here because it's such a minuscule amount of anything that has been not legalized, but rather decriminalized. It won't make a hill of beans of difference to the narcotraficantes.




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HarryinNM

Aug 22, 2009, 2:23 PM

Post #3 of 11 (5817 views)

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Re: [esperanza] legalizing drug user possession

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The important thing here, I believe, is that this may well be a critical step leading to the outright legalization of these drugs. That step, many contend, will lead to the eradication of the drug industry as we know it. While there are predictable downsides to that, the "shootouts" will, likely, move from the streets to drug companies' corporate boardrooms.


richmx2


Aug 22, 2009, 2:41 PM

Post #4 of 11 (5811 views)

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Re: [HarryinNM] legalizing drug user possession

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Harry, your perspective is that of the world's largest CONSUMER nation (one quarter of the planet's narcotics are used by the United States, per the CIA World Fact Book), not a producer/exporter nation.

There isn't a large domestic market for narcotics. Even though it's grown at an alarming rate, a rise in users from less than two percent to over two percent of the population still means narcotics users are relatively rare in the Mexican population. As it is, "personal use" was always an affirmative defense in Mexican law, although proving that was expensive and unlikely to be raised by some kid busted with a joint or two in his pocket (if the kid could even afford a lawyer).


http://mexfiles.net
http://editorialmazatlan.com


gpkgto

Aug 22, 2009, 2:50 PM

Post #5 of 11 (5810 views)

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Re: [HarryinNM] legalizing drug user possession

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At least something will happen. The repeal of prohibition caused the US mafia to move from bootleg booze to other "businesses"--some more or less "victimless" like prostitution, drug dealing and gambling, and some not so victimless like robbery and extorsion.

There seem to be some signs that the Mexican mafia is moving towards other forms of crime already---kidnappings are up 17% this year according to the newspaper, there was a report of a "home invasion" style robbery in San Miguel de Allende (armed) and good friends of mine there were robbed while thay were in the house at 4pm (unarmed).

Who knows where this will lead. Until the buyer (the US customer, primarily) stops arming the criminals (US manufacturers and gun stores), there will be the possibility of continued violence here in Mexico.

On the Mexican side the people have to stop identifying with the criminals instead of the police, the church has to stop accepting blood money as a gift from God, and the corrupt government officials have to be caught and punished.


HarryinNM

Aug 22, 2009, 3:17 PM

Post #6 of 11 (5800 views)

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Re: [richmx2] legalizing drug user possession

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I'm well aware, richmx2, that the Mexican consumer drug market is tiny compared to that in the US. In my initial post, I said, "It seems to me that this may be a very significant step in the right direction, and one that should get serious consideration NOB."

What I had hoped to indicate is that this move by MX may put some pressure on the US Congress to consider a similar law here. As the post following yours states, the history of the legalization of the liquid sedative drug called alcohol, resulted in marked changes in major crime in the US. Prohibition, history tells us, does not work... and, in fact, nurtures criminal organizations.


Peter


Aug 22, 2009, 5:53 PM

Post #7 of 11 (5776 views)

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Re: [HarryinNM] legalizing drug user possession

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Good. I think it's a definite step in the right direction. I'd like to see some Hash Cafes in Mexico like Amsterdam's, with botanas like in the cantinas.


Zorba

Aug 22, 2009, 11:45 PM

Post #8 of 11 (5727 views)

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Re: [Peter] legalizing drug user possession

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I don't know what to think of the whole legalization thing and what effect it would have on Mexico. This recent move is, I think, more of an effort to just avoid all the backlog in the Mexican justice system. I don't see it as a philosophical decision, but more as a practical one. Selling, growing, buying is still illegal. All this does really is stop the courts from having to prosecute thousands of punks caught with a few joints which delays other more important prosecutions. I see it as judicial reform, not drug reform.

In terms of the bigger picture, it could go one of two ways. I suppose alcohol prohibition shows us that legalizing drugs would be a good thing to do. However, I agree that the Mexican mafia would likely just move onto other forms of crime. I doubt many of them would go legit considering their lifestyle as gangsters. They would just get out, as it would no longer be as profitable for them. What really worries me is that what they would move into more aggressively would be the kidnappings. They already do this very efficiently and as a means to supplement their income. If drug profits decrease or disappear citizens may become direct targets as opposed to indirect casualties.


(This post was edited by Zorba on Aug 22, 2009, 11:50 PM)


richmx2


Aug 23, 2009, 10:50 AM

Post #9 of 11 (5679 views)

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Re: [Zorba] legalizing drug user possession

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There is something in what "Zorba" writes, but the two potential problems that are created. First, while drug possession is not a particularly pressing issue for the police and prosecutors now these "reforms" focus on punishing small time sales people. This implies that Mexico is adopting a more U.S. style "punishment" model for social control -- the reforms allow using the resources to prosecute and imprison the small time sellers who'd otherwise be ignored (or, at most, subject to occasional .... uh... unofficial fines and penalties). I have seen very little in the foreign press (or on these expat websites) about the increased spending on prisons, and prison construstion (which will include "for profit prisons").

Secondly, while I agree that gangsters, being gangsters, are just going to find other socially destructive ways to maintain their income (we've seen truckloads of beans and shrimp highjacked here in Sinaloa), the 400,000 or so that depend in some measure on the narcotics export business are going to need to find other ways to support their families. Unless NAFTA policies are changed, or Mexican farmers find new markets outside the United States and Canada, there just isn't any alternative in rural Mexico outside the narcotics trade. These folks are not necessarily gangsters, but they're not going to starve trying to grow corn, just because one can carry a few joints in one's pocket.


http://mexfiles.net
http://editorialmazatlan.com


gpkgto

Aug 23, 2009, 11:09 AM

Post #10 of 11 (5671 views)

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Re: [Zorba] legalizing drug user possession

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The kiddnapping "business" is mostly successful because various corrupt police and military officials are in on it.


Oscar2

Aug 23, 2009, 12:54 PM

Post #11 of 11 (5651 views)

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Re: [Zorba] legalizing drug user possession

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Zorba,

Your beliefs, conjecture and more form viable but yet, still opinions, seemingly from personal exposure to similar media entries most of us unfortunately fall prey too. Decriminalization of small amounts of drugs are indicators that perhaps an awakening of the human condition will start removing the insanity or beliefs that the pain inflected by punishment will in someway cause our resistance to drug usage to increase, where in fact history (prohibition) and more, has proven the opposite.

The more you resist something the greater the need becomes. This, unfortunately, is a human condition we are now finally becoming keenly “aware” of. Usage over time brings its own realization through feedback, education, and more, as to the merits and/or dangers of its use. Same will occur with the acceptance of drugs “over “endured” usage and education time provides. “Yes, it won’t happen overnight, it may take decades” but I’m seeing positive results of this through education of smoking, alcohol and other drugs which are killing inhabitants.

There is no quick fix, or is it, pending ones time frames and perspective. This can be a start to improved health in our future for the majority. As for gangsters, criminals and what have you, well, they unfortunately provide a measuring stick and/or a signpost pointing the way as to what has to be done to improve or remove the ill doings of our human condition.
 
 
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