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Control of recreational substances hazardous to health

Comment 1st July 2010

At present the state has no control of the recreational substance market. The current laws serve only to moderately reduce the availability at the wholesale end of the supply chain, thereby drastically reducing the quality at the retail end of the market. These supposedly controlled substances are widely and freely available on our streets 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and because they are supplied through an unregulated black market, are more dangerous to the consumer than they would be were they produced and distributed through a regulated, transparent retail network. Furthermore, none of the revenue generated by the recreational substance market goes to the state, and yet the abuse of these substances is a great burden on the health and police services and the welfare state.

Criminal law can not stop people wanting to get high, but it can make it safer for the people who chose to do so.

Legalise the market.

Regulate the market.

Educate the consumer.

Why does this matter?

As I have stated above, the recreational substance market is out of control. Its tentacles reach out into every aspect of society from funding criminal gangs who use violence and firearms to carry out robberies, run protection rackets, traffic people, alcohol and cigarettes. To children being drawn away from an education and life prospects by the easy money there is to be made, who end up spending there lives on benefits ( they don't get a job because they already have an income ) and in and out of the prison system. To the parents whose child dies because they acquired all of the knowledge that they have of the substance they are using from urban legend and their peers. Or the children whose farther is sent away for his activities in the illegal substance market, leading to the break up of the family and ultimately the mothers untimely death due to her abuse of alcohol in trying to cope with the situation. I could go on, but as the last scenario happened to someone to whom I am very close it is easy for me to see the far reaching destructive effects of the current situation.

We need to legalise the production and distribution of these substances in order that the market can be regulated and controlled properly.

We must also educate people, especially children, openly and honestly about the dangers and benefits associated with the use of all recreational substances, alcohol included.

It must be remembered that using these substances is not the problem. Abusing them is.

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