Saturday, October 31, 2015

Why liberals are on the wrong side of the war on crime

see my article at American Thinker


Phelps said...

Commenting here because comments are closed there:

First, the victims that you list as being caused by drug use aren't. They are caused by drug prohibition. We had the exact same problems under the Volkstead Act. If we end the prohibition, then we end up with much lesser problems, the same as we currently have with alcohol.

This really brings us to philosophy. If we are leaving laws on the books that cause half of our society to associate themselves with violent criminals, how can that ever be worth it? The police can only succeed when they have the consent of the governed and the support of the population they are policing. These are basic Peelian principles. When we send them out to enforce a hugely unpopular law, we are setting them up for failure. Add in the violence necessary to enforce this (SWAT raids, invasions of privacy, etc) and you are violating even more Peelian Principles.

One of the first things they teach new officers in the Army is "don't give an order you know won't be followed." The correlation to that is "don't pass a law that you know you can't enforce." We know we can't enforce the drug laws. We've been living that for sixty years.

The first step to returning the rule of law is to make the law itself respectable. Right now, the law itself is contemptible.

trinko said...

The problem with drug enforcement is that we let the users get away with it. If we start incarcerating users we'd have better results. And your whole argument is that drug use wouldn't increase if it were legalized which is clearly wrong. The things I listed are caused by people choosing to use drugs even though they know the consequences. If you wish to argue that anything people will do in spite of the law should be legal then you have to decriminalize drunk driving and insider trading.

Phelps said...

Everything you cite about drugs is also true about alcohol.

Alcohol prohibition was a disaster. We had a society that was full of gangsters killing each other and bystanders over the illegal profits, we had dirty cops getting graft, and we STILL had as many addicts, along with a lot of moderate, otherwise productive citizens who are suddenly forced to deal with hardened criminals to get their vice.

How is drug prohibition in any way different? You can't even point at the damage of drugs like meth -- meth is the bathtub gin of today. The same way impure, cheaply made drugs are poisoning people, bathtub gin was poisoning people in prohibition.

At the end of the day, what you are saying is that I should have to pay to have your morality imposed on other people.

Drunk driving has victims and is an action. Drugs are a thing, not an action, and the only victims they have are the people stupid enough to take them, and the people stupid enough to associate with users. That argument is as dishonest as saying that if you support gun rights you should decriminalize mass shootings.

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