Have some quotes from the zeitgeist about drugs. This is in response to an offhand comment from someone I know, who indicated they thought my dedication to ending prohibition was a small issue, that there are bigger issues of equality and human rights in the world that I could be focusing on. I think many people aren’t aware of the cost of prohibition in terms of human rights, and how easily we accept the idea that discrimination against drug users is ok.
“We don’t allow dogs to breed. We spay them. We neuter them. We try to keep them from having unwanted puppies, and yet these women are literally having litters of children.” – Barbara Harris, Project Prevention, on crack-addicted mothers.
I would cheer if every junkie died.” – Ian O’Doherty, Irish Independent, on heroin addicts. This article was withdrawn after a press ombudsman determined that it was hate speech.
She was a drug addict whore and she deserved to die. Lowering the flag for her is the same as burning it.” – By Obama, Mommyish (internet forum where upstanding parents display their moral superiority to each other), on Whitney Houston’s death and whether she should be mourned the same way as soldiers killed in battle.
Mr. Jackson says that he is as committed to it as he is to his belief that drug users are people, too.” – New York Times on a drug users’ union. Apparently drug users being people is something you believe in without knowing it to be true, like faith.
Forty thousand drug users are detained at any one time in Vietnam, and forced labor is their main “treatment.” – Human Rights Watch, on the forced slavery of drug users to facilitate Vietnam’s cashew export market. Drug use is not a criminal offence in Vietnam, these people are ‘patients’.
“Casual drug users ought to be taken out and shot.” – Daryl Gates, LA Police Chief
“At least 676 people were executed there last year. Of those, 480, or 71%, were executed for drug offenses.” – Iran Human Rights, on executions in Iran in 2011.
“In the 2003-04 academic year, about 41,000 applicants for federal student aid were disqualified because of drug convictions.” – USA today on the exclusion of former drug users from financial help for college fees. It should be noted that other criminals are not disqualified, only drug users.
“The most serious offense for 65% of women in federal prisons and 29.1% of women in state prisons is violation of drug laws. – ” Women and the Drug War. Plenty more facts here about the intersection of race, gender and the war on drugs.
“Most people, including most cops, believe women have only themselves to blame when they’re raped while trying to score drugs.” – SashaSaid, When Rape Victims Lie.
“Pregnant women who use drugs should be prosecuted because they harm the life of their unborn children.” – Paul A. Logli, Illinois prosecuting attorney. Did you know that smoking crack cocaine while pregnant harms the foetus no more than tobacco use?
“”At least 12,000 children have lost one or both of their parents.” – Jennifer Gonzalez, AFP, on the children orphaned by the drug wars in Mexico.
““While there certainly are legitimate needs for public assistance, it is unfair for Florida’s taxpayers to subsidize drug addiction.” – Republican commentor, Florida on why he thinks it’s ok to force welfare applicants to submit to a drug test and deny them help for a year if they test positive. Alcohol is ok, naturally. 10 states have introduced this legislation in the USA, and in NZ the Welfare Working Group recommended the same thing.
“Employers may discharge or deny employment to those who currently engage in the illegal use of drugs.” – Americans with Disabilities Act, in which drug use is the only health issue for which an employer in the US may legally dismiss someone. Again, alcohol is just fine. By the way, the NZ employment court has also ruled that recreational drug use is not a disability, leaving employers here also free to sack people for drug use. And people think it’s reasonable to expect someone to undergo pre-employment drug testing, and to refuse them employment if they test positive for cannabis.
I don’t know, do you think it’s a big enough human rights issue?