I am strongly against the legalization of all drugs. I can see how one might make the argument for decriminalizing the use of drugs to prevent the punishment of dependent addicts in need of help, but really outright legalization is a considerably more drastic measure then is needed to do so. I think legalization opens up so many more problems than it solves. A lot of proponents argue that newly legalized substances could be highly regulated and taxed to provide funding for needing sectors like education, but what kind of message does it send to the international community if we’re sending our kids to school on drug money? A lot of people will also point fingers towards countries like The Netherlands and New Zealand where similar legalization has been tried, citing the general downward trend in overall drug use, but the fact remains that these countries are not at all like the US. There is not and never was in those countries cartel based drug trade on the massive scale we see it here in the US. To legalize that trade would only increase its size and give even more money to the criminal organizations participating in it. Due to years of criminalization, those involved in the illegal drug trade currently are largely criminal individuals. While the average dealer might not necessarily be a terrible person, those coordinating the smuggling and distribution of these substances are not, generally speaking, the most moral (and more importantly, law regarding) individuals. Legalization would validate their cartels entirely and perpetuate a trade which has far more numerous negative effects on society than simply the creation of addicts. On that note, to allow addicts to continue using freely creates an even larger public health concern than illegal drugs currently do, this isn’t just immoral, it’s uneconomical and socially irresponsible. Do I think totally dependent addicts should be thrown in jail for using? No, not at all, they’re the biggest victims of illicit substances, they haven’t necessarily done anything wrong yet and are suffering both physically and legally for it. Complete legalization wouldn’t be helping them at all, however; it would do nothing but benefit further the criminals already fed by the drug trade and open the door to increase new user-ship on the whole. There is no way I could support complete legalization.