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More cops, more violence

A new report claims increased policing increases drug-related violence


 

A new report by the B.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS says increased policing does nothing to halt the violence that follows the illegal drug trade—in fact, stepping up law enforcement tactics only increases it. According to lead researcher Dr. Evan Wood, the federal Conservatives’
law-and-order legislation that would see criminals sentenced to ever-longer sentences will only heighten turf wars between criminal gangs. “When you destabilize the market by taking key players out,” he said, “violence will ensue.” Wood says governments would be better off regulating the drug trade to take the criminal element out of the distribution process. Critics of the report point out that while there may be a temporary spike in violence as criminals rush to fill the void in the drug market, the long-term effects of criminalization are worth the trouble. “If you allow criminals to just run rampant and you allow the drugs to run rampant, there will be increased violence.”

National Post


 
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More cops, more violence

  1. Uhm, usually there is more policing BECAUSE of the violence, not despite it… Criminal activity will fill any void, based on opportunities to expand profitable endeavors.

    “When you destabilize the market by taking key players out,” Wood said, “violence will ensue.” I guess it's better if we just let them carry on their business…

    • Bingo. Decriminalization/legalization will take these billion dollar industries away from the gangs. That would do more to reduce violence than any number of police. Spend those police salaries on harm reduction.

  2. And/or treatment centres and the such…

    • if drugs were legal then people would have class action lawsuits against the manufacturers and distributers

  3. The biggest fans of prohibition are the criminal gangs. So yes, decriminalize, license and tax the sales, and the criminals will find some other unsavory practice instead.

    But the headline is a MAJOR FAIL. It's not "more cops, more violence." It's "criminalize a market with high demand, and only criminals will enter the market — and criminals compete with one another violently."

  4. Let's get a note of reality and practicality into the dialogue. Who's going to pay for the drugs addicts use? Me, out of my taxes? No thanks. I already pay far too much to supply medication unnecessary for survival to the weak-willed and stupid. Anyone stupid enough to become a drug addict deserves whatever living hell they get. Their stupidity isn't my fault or my responsibility, so I won't pay for it.

    It's funny how all the people advocating decriminalization appear to be the folk with the lowest incomes in the country, who probably don't pay any taxes on welfare in the first place. When they've got nothing to lose themselves, I guess promoting the idea that the people who work should pay for their self-indulgent lifestyles sounds good to them. Meanwhile, to the people who do work and pay taxes, the idea that we should pay for the stupid lifestyles of the people with the worst character in the country sounds plain crazy.

    • Who's going to pay for the drugs addicts use? Me, out of my taxes? No thanks.

      Q1 Would you care to highlight ANY advocate of decriminalization making such a stupid suggestion?

      Q2 Have you heard of alcohol and tobacco?

  5. Harper`s cerebral approach to conflict resolution. Use brawn and no brains. Neo cons are dangerous.

  6. Pagan Barbarian seems to think that all drug users are hopeless addicts sleeping in the streets. Lots of people do drugs who are either (a) non-addicts, or (b) successful, normal people. This is true even in the case of hard drugs. For example, the vast majority of cocaine users are casual and do not become addicts.

    And is it possible you might be paying for some users fix if drugs were legalized? Sure. But you're already paying a ton of money in taxes to support the war on drugs. If drugs were legalized, I also don't think you would see people getting caught in shootouts between rival gangs. Ask yourself, how many liqour store owners do you know that try to kill their competition?

  7. HIV/AIDS equals needles use. Needles equals heroin. Very few heroin addicts can afford the habit, meaning taxpayers will pay for the drug. No decriminalization in Canada will have the slightest affect on the illegality of drugs for the feeble-minded, weak-willed, and foolish around the rest of the planet. The high prices to indulge the self-indulgent will remain exactly the same, with the possible exception of marijuana.

    Those who question or criticize the views of intelligent, reasonable adults merely reveal their immaturity. Age and experience will show those people that indulging people of bad character is always a mistake in social engineering. That's what got us into this mess in the first place. Instead, putting people of bad character in a cage for wild animals is disposing of them exactly where they belong.

    • Nice ad hominem. Just because you disagree with my argument does not mean I or others who agree with me are immature. Does shelling out billions of dollars a year to incarcerate non-violent drug offenders lighten the public purse. Yep. Does it result in innocents getting killed? People who are not weak, feeble minded, or foolish? Yep. Look what's happening to Mexico because of the war on drugs. In Juarez, Mexico, thousands are being murdered each year. And there is no way that all those people getting killed are involved in the drug trade. Should they have to die so we can we throw a person caught with an 8-ball in jail and we can feel morally superior? Because that's what the situation boils down to.

      A final point and then a question for you. First, people used to talk about the "demon rum" in the same terms you do now. Anybody who touched a drop of the sauce would inevitably become some sort of hobo alkie. Yet there are plenty of high functioning alcoholics out there. But what about the ones who aren't so high functioning? Would you throw them in a cage with wild animals too?

  8. Anyone who believes that the "War on Drugs" has any intent (or effect) of reducing drug use is a real idiot. Sorry, do some research. I am all for people not killing themselves by ODing on heroin, but if you think spending billions on enforcement and stuffing our prisons full of drug users results in anything positive other than giving cops, screws and bureaucrats more jobs, you need to get out more and stop listening to CNN.

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