A crucial new study says the ubiquitous and dubious war on drugs has, in actuality, been detrimental to public health — and should be laid to rest in favor of decriminalization.
Laws and policies criminalizing drugs have had “no measurable impact on supply or use,” according to the study as noted by the Independent, and serve no purpose either scientifically or in terms of public health.
Commissioned by Johns Hopkins University and The Lancet, a British medical journal, the study found mass decriminalization programs undertaken by Portugal and the Czech Republic have had enormously constructive results, including “public health benefits, cost savings, lower incarceration [rates], and no significant increase in problematic drug use.”
Portugal’s model recently became an official subject for consideration by the State of Hawai`i in its search for solutions to drug addiction and mounting costs of the criminalization of minor drug offenses. The Lancet study authors strongly encourage action by influential countries, including the U.S. and U.K., to consider national “regulated markets” for cannabis — such as the policies adopted by Uruguay and several U.S. states.