A proposed shift in drug policy: From prevention to harm reduction | Brain Study

However, the real strength of Professor Nutt’s argument is in his rationale for sensible drug policy based on scientific results rather than political scare-mongering and media sensationalism.

This comment isn’t fair. Drug policy ought to be based on scientific results concerning harm only after a decision has been taken to make drugs policy a matter of harm reduction, harm reduction in the terms that science can measure i.e. a matter of physiological health. Society might decide that it doesn’t want drugs to be part of people’s lives as a matter of principle, in which case, scientific results are completely irrelevant. I agree with Ms Smith and Prof Nutt, but don’t think the opposition should be disposed of so condescendingly.

Drugs are going to be part of some peoples’ lives, whether society likes it or not.

And since when does society get to decide that on grounds other than harm to others? Minimising harm from drug use is a legitimate goal. Minimising drug use is no more a legitimate goal than minimising non-procreative sex is.

Comment by jgh Wed 26 Sep 2012 12:24:39 UTC
comment UTJG53B32218NL3A

I’m not sure I understand the relevance of the second part of your comment.  I’d probably go further than you, saying that minimising harm from drug use is only legitimate for the state if (a) that harm is to people other than the drug-user or (b) said minimisation efforts consist in actually stopping people from exercising their freedom to use drugs.  My issue with the article above is that it reads to me as assuming that the non-liberal position doesn’t exist, not that it is just something it disagrees with.

Comment by spw Wed 26 Sep 2012 16:27:58 UTC