Saturday 12 January 2013

Casualties of Prohibition

Six people are in hospital, and one remains in a critical condition after taking what was supposed to be the drug 2CB  (but could have been anything -- they bought it over the Internet -- Julie.)  in Jesmond, Tyne and Wear:

Make no mistake, these people are casualties of prohibition.  By which I mean that their situation is attributable to the illegality of 2CB.  This whole situation would never have happened, if recreational drugs were legal.

They did not know what they were taking, or how much, because it was illegal. Which is a recipe for an overdose.  It's no more illegal to sell mislabelled or adulterated drugs than properly-labelled, clean  drugs, so there is absolutely no incentive for quality control.   And people who are having a bad experience with illegal drugs tend to hold off from involving the authorities for as long as possible, for fear of incriminating themselves and their friends and family; sometimes, they leave it too late.

A chocolate bar will have an ingredients list and a nutritional breakdown, showing how much fat and sugar it contains.  If there is a likelihood that it may contain trace amounts of allergens, this also will be displayed on the packaging.  Someone needing hospital treatment for a severe allergic reaction to a trace of hazelnut in a chocolate bar is not going to be given the third degree about where they bought the chocolate, and threatened with a prison sentence if they do not inform on the shopkeeper who sold it to them.

Prohibition kills.  It really is that simple.

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