Over the past month in Cape Town, South Africa, countless people have referenced the prevalence of violence, the impact of gangsterism, and their own distrust of police employees, but very few have mentioned drug policy* as the lynchpin between the three. Yet if one is serious about bringing-about a better reality here on the ground, it is a conversation that must be had.
Merely dictating that a good or service in demand is prohibited will not cease its supply but will drive it underground, which is sure to be accompanied by a host of negative unintended consequences. Violence, to control distribution or to settle disputes, is perhaps the most visible. Corruption, of those tasked with enforcing the proclaimed prohibition, is commonplace.
Also, unless there are two classes of people (masters and slaves) it’s important to recognize that such claims – a stranger acting as if s/he and their friends have the right to tell you how you can allocate your scarce resources and what you can do with your own body – are without merit.
Quite simply, prohibition doesn’t work.
RESOURCES USED IN VIDEO ABOVE
- Shattered Dreams – South Africa by Journeyman Productions
- Druglords must be jailed for life Ramaphosa by sabcdigitalnews
- Mob justice: cops watch killing by The New Age
- PAGAD – the Gangsters Enemy by Journeyman Pictures
- Pagad take aim at gangsters over Ramadaan by eNCAnews
- South Africa police at crossroads, says Sean Tait by Cop Block
- South Africa Police Service Needs to Clean House says Liza Grobler by Cop Block
- Counting the Costs of Archaic Drug Policies and Strategies in Southern Africa by Institute for Security Studies
- Crime in South Africa by Nation Master
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