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The Barbara Panvel Column



Inspired by reading Ben Elton's "High Society" Barbara Panvel wonders whether it's time to scrap drugs laws altogether ...

In our ‘civilized' society homes are broken into and people are attacked and robbed by drug addicts desperate to finance their craving.

The illegal economy is awash with trillions of pounds of easy money and drug dealers grow richer.

The police force is buckling under the strain of drug-related crime, some areas are becoming fiefdoms for drug gangs, guns are used on the streets and gangs take control of estates.

In some areas there is a drug dealer on every street corner but no corner shop - they're all boarded up.

For many, buying drugs is simple, but if they want a teabag it's half an hours' walk.

Thousands of people are injecting heroin in Britain every day. Others accidentally come into contact with this bloodied and dangerous litter- in playgrounds, in public toilets, in council lifts and smart shop doorways.

The solution: legalisation.

This will not lead to a rise in drug taking because drugs are already available to all who want them

Pharmaceutical-grade drugs produced under licence would save lives because contamination would be avoidedand accidental overdoses would be a thing of the past with standardised dosages.

Corner shops, local chemists and off-licences could legally sell these drugs putting ninety per cent of the nation's criminal networks out of business overnight.

Using fair trade practice producers in the developing world could be liberated from the grip of drug warlords.

Taxing recreational drugs like the more legal dangerous drugs - alcohol & tobacco - would enable more to be spent on public services - or lead to a reduction in income tax.

There could be a serious attempt to make our society one in which all would have some hope, purpose and dignity and no longer crave oblivion.


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