Should drugs be legalized

Legalization of drugs such as marijuana, cocaine and heroin often provokes intense disagreement among citizens as well as policymakers. Because legalization would create a market for these drugs, economists can provide helpful commentary based on consumer choice and demand.

To read about the current debate visit:

http://www.drugpolicy.org/news/082307media.cfm

http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/debate/debate….

Support for legalization does not divide easily along traditional political viewpoints. For a conservative group’s argument see the Cato Institute at:

http://www.cato.org/testimony/ct-dbz061699.html

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) discusses the issue at: http://www.aclu.org/criminal-law-reform

By contrast, the US Department of Justice argues against legalization at: http://www.dea.gov/pr/multimedialibrary/publicatio…

For additional discussion by mainstream economists see:

Brookings Institution (a private research group)

http://www.brookings.edu/research/articles/1996/03…

National Bureau of Economic Research, “Smoking, Drinking, and Drug Use Respond to Price Changes”

http://www.nber.org/digest/may05/w10948.html

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