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Libertarians believe drugs should be decriminalized.
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Libertarian support for Drug Legalisation is dangerous

Libertarians believe recreational drugs should be legalized, so a person has the liberty to choose what they do with their own body. But drug abuse undermines individual freedom.
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The Argument

Libertarian's pro-drug stance goes against their fundamental belief that the government has a responsibility to protect a person's freedom and prevent them from harm. To have personal freedom, you must have rationality. It is impossible to make a rational choice if a person's cognitive faculties are compromised. Drugs comprise a person's ability to think clearly, which means they are unable to act freely.[1] People on drugs can cause harm to themselves and others. There is a correlation between drug use and social and economic failure, domestic violence, criminal activity, and destructive parenting. A person's freedom to consume drugs affects not only the person's safety but also their liberty and community.[2] Drugs are addictive, and addictions impair the freedom of a drug addict because they control their lives. For those who are physically and psychologically dependent on drugs, drug use can lead to destructive behavior and loss of self-control. Addiction can impact all aspects of an addict's life and affect their ability to work or study, care for themselves, and form and maintain relationships. Addiction affects not only the freedom of the individual but the freedom of others.[1] This argument believes drug prohibition, not drug decriminalization, is more compatible with a libertarian's vision of a freedom-respecting state.

Counter arguments

Libertarians believe everyone has the right to bodily autonomy and it is up to the individual to decide what they choose or do not choose to consume. They feel if someone decides to take recreational drugs, no one has the authority to stop them. Additionally, there is an argument that alcohol can be more harmful and addictive than hard drugs, so it is only fair that drugs are legalized too. [3] Legalizing drugs would make it easier for addicts to get treatment. If addicts were treated instead of criminalized, it would reduce the pressure on prison services. If drugs were legalized, they can be regulated to ensure they are not dangerously tainted by the black market, and their potency could be decreased which would help to prevent overdoses. A legalized drug market also means governments could profit from tax revenue.[4]

Proponents

Premises

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2018/01/20650/
  2. https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/06/why-libertarians-are-wrong-about-drugs-107896
  3. https://www.libertarianism.org/topics/illicit-drugs
  4. https://oceanrecoverycentre.com/2020/07/pros-and-cons-of-legalising-drugs/
This page was last edited on Friday, 6 Nov 2020 at 18:05 UTC