While more and more Americans are aware that the War on Cannabis has had disastrous effects across our country, the detrimental effects prohibition has caused across the globe can sometimes go unnoticed. No country has suffered from cannabis prohibition as much as Mexico as cannabis prohibition inflates prices and creates a lucrative cash cow for drug cartels. Tragically, kidnappings, murder and dismemberment are all too common consequences of a lucrative drug trade in Mexico
Several European countries have experienced great success legalizing the personal use of cannabis, including the Netherlands and Portugal and recently South American countries have made moves toward reforming cannabis laws for the better, particularly in Argentina and Uruguay. It is very promising to see positive reforms across the globe and hopefully former Mexican President Vicente Fox is correct and Mexico will end cannabis prohibition within five years.
Former Mexican President Vicente Fox now realizes that legalizing cannabis will deprive cartels of profits.
From Yahoo News:
Fox, who battled the powerful cartels while president between 2000 and 2006, has since become a staunch advocate of reforming Mexico's drug laws, arguing that prohibition has helped create the criminal market that sustains the gangs.
Under his successor, Felipe Calderon, Mexico launched a military offensive to crush the cartels, but the violence spiraled instead, and more than 70,000 people have been killed in drug-related bloodletting since the start of 2007.
Legalization was the best way of ending the "butchery" of the drug gangs, Fox said as he hosted a conference in support of the measure in his home state of Guanajuato in central Mexico.
Mexican drug cartels are the Al Capone of today. Just as Al Capone and other mobsters were enriched during Alcohol Prohibition, cartels profit off of the prohibitionary-inflated prices of cannabis. Outlaws will always be willing to make money on illegal ventures. Legitimate business people, however, will only enter a market with clear laws and regulations.
While many prohibitionists and government officials on both sides of the American-Mexico border are celebrating the apprehension of the leader of the Los Zetas drug cartel, his capture won't stop any of the drug trade. The competition to take his place will only lead to higher profit margins and more bloodshed as other cartel members move in to fill the void and reap the lucrative profits.
Do we want gangsters or taxed businesses controlling cannabis commerce?
Ending alcohol prohibition will bring in business interests that will eventually force outlaws out of the market, just as Anheuser Busch, other large beer companies, as well as microbreweries, now dominate alcohol distribution instead of gangsters. Businesses pay taxes and licensing fees and have an incentive to weed out those skirting the rules. These taxes help pay for schools, law enforcement, health care programs and other social services. Illegal gangs only bring us more violence and bloodshed.
Prohibitionists, seem to favor drug cartels over McMenamins and Boulevard. Fortunately, more and more people across the globe are realizing the folly of cannabis prohibition and understand that we should be licensing and taxing more legitimate businesses instead of suffering through the violence caused by the Al Capones and Zetas of the world.