I keep hearing more and more groups online advocating the legalization of drugs in the United States. Those in favor of this idea say legalizing drugs would dramatically decrease the violent drug-related crime across America and would also be a big boost to the government’s bottom line in the form of taxes on the legal drug sales.
Personally I think legalizing drugs in all 50 states would be a horrible idea. Alcohol and cigarettes kill enough people already. But this idea will not go away. So how about this… legalize all drugs in Nevada as a test. Nevada can pick the county it will be legal in. Anything goes. You want it, it would be for sale there. Cocaine. Meth. Speed. LSD. Marijuana. Everything.
Let Nevada be the only state with that one county where everything is fully legal for five years. Nevada can set whatever tax they want on each sale for each specific item, collect all income for the state, set their own enforcement rules and control the structure of the community of the country the drugs will be legal in. I say pay the federal government 6% of the gross to top it off.
During those five years, increase the penalty for selling and/or using drugs in all of the other 49 states. I’m talking extra severe. Mandatory no-parole 2 year term for possession. Mandatory no-parole 10 year term for distributing. Tack on additional years at each judge’s discretion.
The DEA would still be necessary, but mainly as a inter-state drug enforcer role (IE: making sure drugs don’t get out of Nevada into the other 49 states).
After this five year test, allow the other 49 states to define their drug policy by majority vote.
If Nevada becomes a success, the other states will emulate them very quickly. Job stimulation, overall increased income and sound state-specific social programs all created with very minimal government intervention is the positive idea behind legalizing drugs.
If Nevada fails, then the drug problem will have been mostly concentrated in one location which can be more easily dealt with, and the other 49 states (and everyone clamoring for legalizing drugs) will have indisputable proof of drug legalization’s failure.
Either way, it sounds too easy to work, right?