Eli5 how decriminalization of drugs lowers rates


Eli5 how decriminalization of drugs lowers rates

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It allows police to look for worse crimes, also if you know they ain’t coming for you, you’ll be in less shady spots

Rates of what? Crime? Mainly because you don’t need to interact with shady people anymore. They call pot a gateway drug. If you can buy it at a corner store you don’t need to buy it from the dealer who also sells heroin and wants you to also buy heroin.

A huge portion of the harms caused by using a lot of drugs are directly related to the fact they’re illegal. Having the drugs be illegal to use ends up saddling a lot of people with criminal records that limit their access to education and employment – often perpetuating the conditions that led to a person taking the drugs to start with, and it drives the sales of the drugs to criminal organizations, dragging users into dealings with people committing other crimes. It also makes it more difficult for users to seek treatment for drug use, and limits treatment options.

Decriminalizing drugs remove many of these harms, making it easier for those who want help to access it, and reducing the number of people who get formally marginalized by society due to criminal records who wind up taking drugs because their life has entered a new level of suckage.

It also takes away some of the “glamor” of drug use, presenting it as an illness, where people are sick and getting treated in a clinical setting, rather than having it be some sort of edgy and rebellious thing teenagers do.

Because when you make a business whose central function is nonviolent legal, you remove the incentive to commit violence in that business.

Selling heroin is definitely kinda messed up, but it’s not a violent act. It’s a consensual agreement between two people. But if it’s illegal to sell heroin, then both of the participants are at risk just by doing it. As a result, if they are under threat, they have more reason to resort to violence to escape that threat. If shooting a guy is gonna get you out of a 10-20, and you aren’t likely to be caught for the murder, that guy is getting shot. Similarly, when the only sources of an addictive substance are illegal, this draws everyone addicted to it into these incentive structures as well.

It turns out that throwing drug users in jail is a really terrible way to make them not use drugs anymore. They meet lots of other drug users and dealers while they’re in there, and when they get out their criminal record makes it more difficult to escape the poverty conditions that frequently lead to drug use in the first place.

If you decriminalize drugs instead it’s a lot easier and safer for addicts to seek proper treatment for their addiction. They have better access to services that help them improve their lives to escape the conditions that foster drug use.

It’s important to understand the decriminalization assumes that a proper care network exists (or will develop in tandem). On its own it just frees up jail cells, but it provides the opportunity for proper treatment and care that will *actually* help with the problem.

The term “drugs” is very broad, and few are in favor of decriminalizing all of them.

When things are decriminalized, like inter-racial marriage, it gives police the opportunity to fight actual crime, like robbery. It also gives people in the business access to law enforcement and the courts to resolve their differences, so they don’t all need guns to handle disputes. All these things reduce crime and encourage civil behavior by all.

Legalization of pot has another advantage. Pot is a plant, and modern agribusiness can produce ginormous amounts of plant with extremely high quality and consistency. It’s one thing for a Mexican pot cartel to compete with a criminal pot enterprise operating in secret; that’s relatively fair “criminal vs criminal” competition. Putting the pot cartel up against state-legal pot growers makes the cartel’s job harder, but federal legalization would put the cartel up against Archer Daniels Midland and Phillip Morris. Those giants of agriculture have driven the cost of plant matter in the US to all time lows.

A lot of the problems related to drugs come from the fact that by being illegal makes the entire process impossible to regulate and ensure its safe since there is nothing preventing violent crime surrounding it.

Making something illegal also means you need to spend resources enforcing this law(ie: this is why prohibition failed so badly, its was an unenforceable law at the time)

the places the chose to decriminalize it made it so under the added bonus of also placing regulations and faith that their citizens will be safe if they have to go that route._AKA doing this DEMANDS that a proper Care Network also comes into existence if its not up already, otherwise you are effectively sanctioning drug abuse.

In addition to a bunch of great comments, The War on Drugs (TWOD) has allowed Police and Justice to rebrand racism. Other institutions have slowly evolved and are weeding out systemic racism, but Police and Justice have simply rebranded it. It’s not a black community, it’s a drug zone.

Nixon created TWOD and outright said it was to jail black and counterculture activists under the guise of health and safety. Politicians have dragged out TWOD for political, “tough on crime,” points for decades (lookin at you Joe Biden).

I don’t think substantive Police and Justice reform can begin until we treat drugs/addiction like adults instead of just prohibiting it. Legalize, tax, regulate. It’s the only definitive way to get a handle on it.