The Drug War In a Nutshell

Thoreau explains to a friend what will happen to him if he decides to grow a marijuana plant on his property:

  • Masked men with guns would break down your door.
  • They would confiscate your assets.
  • They would drag you away in front of your family.
  • They would lock you in a cage with violent criminal gangs.
  • They would do these things because if you were allowed to grow and use that plant then something bad might happen.

The only thing neglected here, as one of Thoreau’s commenters points out, is that the masked men would also shoot your dog. Other than that, that about sums it up.

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Alex Knapp
About Alex Knapp
Alex Knapp is Associate Editor at Forbes for science and games. He was a longtime blogger elsewhere before joining the OTB team in June 2005 and contributed some 700 posts through January 2013. Follow him on Twitter @TheAlexKnapp.

Comments

  1. Seriously now, you need to replace “will” with “might.”

    Of course the same thing can happen to you because someone else decided to grow a marijuana plant but somehow the police ended up with your address.

  2. Brian Knapp says:

    Of course the same thing can happen to you because someone else decided to grow a marijuana plant but somehow the police ended up with your address.

    I’m pretty sure they don’t need an address on the warrant these days.

  3. rodney dill says:

    I’m pretty sure they don’t need an address on the warrant these days.

    …but they do actually need to be able to find your place.

  4. Drew says:

    I don’t think we really need to go to the hysterical civil rights violations contemplated by Thoreau.

    The real problem with the “War on Drugs” is that it has reduced supply and increased price. This is the source of all the profits for the foreign drug lords down through the street corner bag man………….and all of the attendant violence and urban society malformations. These costs far, far, far outweigh the benefits of curtailed drug usage, in my humble opinion.

    This is perhaps the single most wrong headed policy associated with conservatism.

    Would th that Obama would focus on this and do some good rather than taking over a seventh of the economy.

  5. anjin-san says:

    Now is absolutely the time to reform marijuana laws. It seems to be the one issue that left and right can agree upon. The war on drugs has done far more damage to society than the drugs themselves.

  6. Steve Plunk says:

    I have mixed feelings about the drug war but I am not sure the cost of it outweighs the damage of the drugs themselves. That one will be awfully hard to quantify and compare.

  7. Franklin says:

    I have mixed feelings about the drug war but I am not sure the cost of it outweighs the damage of the drugs themselves.

    You seem to be under the impression that the current drug war is reducing drug use more than other approaches could.

    If you took the $20+ billion a year spent on bombing Columbian fields and all that non-sense, and instead used it for drug prevention and rehabilitation, drug use would actually drop significantly. Plus you’d get all the other benefits – the profit margin for dealers would disappear which would end drug violence overnight.

    People tend to think of drug use as a subversive activity that should be punished. And perhaps it is when kids first try it. But once addicted, it is a disease that needs to be treated. The current approach is skewed terribly in the wrong direction if the goal is to reduce drug abuse.

  8. floyd says:

    How about…Legalize drugs and give drug tests for welfare and unemployment?