With regard to the lucrative illegal drug market and the violence it spawns: there is something in common between the seemingly polar positions of Prohibition vs Legal Regulation.
Both positions advocate drug-free lifestyles, and the minimization of the harms from drug addiction.
The difference is that the legal regulation group says you can never totally get rid of addictions and freely made lifestyle choices, and that, provided that there is no criminal harm to others, this is a matter of health.
The legal regulation position emphasizes a Four Pillar Approach which is Prevention, Treatment, Harm Reduction, and Enforcement.
Those who advocate Prohibition wish to eradicate the problem entirely using a three-pillar approach, Prevention, Treatment, and Enforcement.
Enforced Prohibition is necessary in this approach and will maintain the black market, violence, and gangs.
We need to realize that there are no ‘perfect solutions’ here only ‘least bad ones’, and that unfortunately as we have learned in the past with alcohol, Prohibition is the worst solution.
When you prohibit you cannot regulate — just look at the excellent progress we have made in the last 50 years in reducing smoking, which is legally regulated.
It is time for our federal government to move ahead and develop the necessary policy for legal regulation.
Dave Kennedy, Vernon