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ACT Illiberal on Methamphetamines

ACT Illiberal on Methamphetamines

"The Government's decision to reclassify methamphetamines to Class A status - with support from the so-called 'liberals' of the ACT party, the substance fascists of United Future, and the socialists of the National party - smacks of them once again believing that adults don't own their bodies and can't make their own decisions on what to ingest," announced Libertarianz Deputy Leader Peter Osborne today.

"Adults own their bodies, and it is not up to the state to criminalise consenting adults for ingesting a substance that may be harmful to them; it is not up to the state to criminalise those supplying such substances to willing adults. The only condition on those ingesting such substances is that they must bear the full responsibility for their actions," says Osborne. He maintains that assaulting anyone while stoned, for example, should be no different in law than assaulting someone while drunk or sober.

"All parties in Parliament want to punish adults for what they want to ingest under the excuse that it will protect them," says Osborne, who does note the "possible exception of the Greens, who are relaxed about illegal drugs but who seem keen nonetheless to ban alcohol and tobacco." He maintains that the biggest hypocrites, however, are the ACT party, whose so-called 'liberal' credentials look more tattered by the week. "This really should be a no-brainer for anyone professing liberalism," he says.

Osborne wonders how any of the parties can possibly think that banning a substance protects anyone, given that banning shifts provision of the substance onto a black market of criminal gangs, puts the price up, and then criminalises those using that substance. "Who does that 'protect'?" he asks. "They all blithely ignore the mounting overseas evidence that criminalising drugs does not work - it simply places the supply of substances adults want into the criminal underworld. Even The Economist concluded two years ago that, while the consumption of illegal drugs is not a good idea, the consequences of criminalisation are worse and that all illicit drugs should be decriminalised."

Osborne clarifies that "Libertarianz would legalise all drugs for adult consumption and supply, and end the pointless War on Drugs that chews up Police, Court, and prison time. We would let adults decide for themselves what they put into their own bodies, and by doing so we would get rid of a major source of income for criminal gangs. That would not just be common sense and a blow for freedom," he concludes. "That would be being truly liberal."

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