* Cocaine that is sold on the street (as a result of prohibition) can be anywhere from 100% pure to 10% pure (mixed with lots of other stuff – sometimes very dangerous stuff); alcohol in comparison tends to be…what? 4% to 6% for beer?
* Cocaine in small amounts is not addictive, barring those few people with a genetic predisposition for cocaine addiction – much like alcohol
* Cocaine in small amounts does not cause significant physiological damage; it takes higher and more frequent doses to cause significant harm – much like alcohol
* Cocaine may be a safer social lubricant than alcohol – I can’t seem to dig-up anything with regards to it impairing driving ability or co-ordination. It just seems to make people more energetic.
* Contrary to popular belief, cocaine was NOT removed from coca-cola because it was too dangerous or it became illegal – it was due to propaganda in America making people believe that cocaine was causing black people to commit violence – and, playing on the racial prejudices of the white majority, cocaine became very unpopular – much like cannabis with the whole Reefer Madness a few decades later. Coca-cola removed cocaine to avoid alienating a good segment of their customer base.
* Cocaine was criminalized in the US around the same time as alcohol was. So the argument that ‘cocaine was outlawed for a reason’ doesn’t fly unless you also believe alcohol should be illegal (which it still would be, if it hadn’t been so embedded in so many western cultures a long time ago)
* South Americans, to whom the coca plant is native, have been consuming the cocaine-containing leaves of it for many, many generations – without any notable negative effects
* Cocaine has a range of positive uses – as a treatment for asthma, hay fever, indigestion, fatigue, impotence, travel sickness, stomach irritability etc.
It’s easy to dismiss cocaine because of how it is used currently, in relatively-very pure doses or if it’s in low doses, then it tends to be cut with a lot of other things like novacain or levamisole; the harmful effects are often unfairly attributed solely to cocaine. But what if you compare some of the cocaine you get on the streets nowadays to a very strong alcoholic drink. Absinthe for instance? Is cocaine really that bad in comparison?
Now, considering those things, it makes me think – perhaps we should bring back drinks like the original coca-cola with small amounts of cocaine and treat cocainated beverages the same as alcoholic beverages. The benefits I see are this:
* Less harm caused by cocaine due to those who want to use it having access to a much safer method and source of consumption – much lower purity, no contaminants – people being able to ingest it orally rather than snorting it
* Less/less severe driving accidents due to cocaine not causing as much impairment as alcohol
* Less money for criminals – and more money for us! Due to taxing the cocaine products and a lot of cocaine users turning to legal sources of it rather than the black market
I think that the un-approved manufacture and distribution of cocaine, and cocaine of certain purity should remain illegal and those perpetrating it targeted however.
Okay, sadly, this is the response I was expecting. I presume that nobody who has answered this question so far knows anything about cocaine, and the fact that it is a scheduled substance means nothing. Marijuana is a Schedule I substance, yet it has enormous therapeutic use. The government also made Ecstasy a Schedule I substance, against the recommendation of most experts and a judge. It’s sad how brainwashed most people are with regards to illegal drugs – they’re not even capable of thinking about the issue. Rather they just follow their knee-jerk reaction – as they’ve been trained to.
Please, for everybody’s sake, do some research that isn’t just eating-up all the War on Drugs propaganda.