Legalize it all: How to win the war on drugs

“We’re confronted now with the fact that the U.S. cannot enforce domestically what it promotes elsewhere,” a member of the U.N.’s International Narcotics Control Board, which monitors international compliance with the conference’s directives, told me.

​When the [United Nations] General Assembly convenes [in April 2016], it also will have to contend with the startling fact that four states and the capital city of the world’s most zealous drug enforcer have fully legalized marijuana. Shortly before Oregon, Alaska, and the District of Columbia added themselves to the legal-marijuana list, the State Department’s chief drug-control official, William Brownfield, abruptly reversed his stance. Whereas before he had said that the “drug control conventions cannot be changed,” in 2014 he admitted that things had changed: “How could I, a representative of the government of the United States of America, be intolerant of a government that permits any experimentation with legalization of marijuana if two of the fifty states of the United States of America have chosen to walk down that road?” Throughout the drug-reform community, jaws dropped. As the once-unimaginable step of ending the war on drugs shimmers into view, it’s time to shift the conversation from why to how.

Original Article (Harpers):
Legalize It All: How to Win the War on Drugs
Artwork Fair Use: 2014 Oregon Judicial Department

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