BRITAIN’S new Home Secretary Priti Patel wants criminals to ‘literally feel terror,’ and one way she plans to do this is to have zero tolerance towards drug users.
Vowing to make the lamentable Tories a ‘party of police,’ rather than the party of clowns that it really is, the arch-Brexiteer and death penalty supporter recently declared: ‘Any form of drug use – you don’t turn a blind eye to it at all. It has a corrosive impact on people and communities.’
This signals a ramping up of the ‘war on drugs, a policy that has been shown in both the UK and America to have done nothing other than escalate levels of crime and lose taxpayers trillions in wasted revenues.
Let’s look first at the US. In June, 1971, Richard Nixon fired the first salvos in a war on drugs. By 2010, the cost of that ‘war’ had soared to over $1 trillion! Now $51 billion is spent annually in the hopeless battle against illegal substances.
The UK, meanwhile, is squandering £1.6 billion a year in pursuit of a strategy that has little or zero effect on drug consumption.
Patel’s declaration horrified me, as it did LBC radio presenter Maajid Nawaz. He pointed out that on a variety of toxicity scales, alcohol remained at the top, while cocaine and cannabis only came in at fifth and eighth positions, respectively.
So, if it’s public health that concerns Patel, logically she should imposing a ban on alcohol and tobacco, both of which are considerably more toxic than cannabis and cause far more deaths. This, of course, won’t happen, because alcohol and smoking is too deeply ingrained in British culture.
Like me, Nawaz was also outraged by her suggestion that judicial terrorism should be used against criminals. He predicted, that, were the police to terrorise suspects, as they once routinely did, the public would lose what little trust it has in them.
I have first-hand experience of that sort of brutal policing. Back in the 1970s, after I had a bottle smashed over my head by one of a gang of homophobic thugs, a police officer in Tottenham, north London, said: ‘Well that’s the sort of thing that happens around here to f****** poofters.’ And he then strip searched me, looking for drugs. Fortunately, a small packet of weed I’d had on me fell out my pocket when I was attacked.
Patel’s words highlighted all that is wrong with British politicians, most of whom are too stubborn, too out-of-touch with public opinion or too stupid to realise that the only way to deal with the drug ‘problem’ is to decriminalise ALL illegal substances and subject them to regulation and taxation.
At a stroke, drug gangs will be largely eliminated and tax revenues could be used to drag the NHS out of the hole it’s presently in. And there will be enough cash left over to tackle the desperate social problems that are destroying the fabric of British society.
Other countries have shown that this is the only sensible way forward, but when last did you see political leaders in the UK, or America for that matter, exhibit anything other than gross ignorance and breathtaking incompetence?