Comment 31752

By Frank (registered) | Posted June 15, 2009 at 12:48:12

JonC, you're welcome to believe what you want about cultural differences, I'm speaking from my own experience...you see, I'm Dutch :) I have a lot of family and even more friends who still live in Holland. SO, while there may not be studies I can quote, or numbers I can tell you, I am speaking from personal experience.

As far as what you feel a nation should or shouldn't be known for, perhaps you should leave that to the nation itself to decide? Or do you believe that Somalia should start exploiting the fact that they have pirates that attack international ships and leave it at that? Or that maybe Colombia should not bother trying to clean up their drug problems but use it as a selling point? While you may not know the Netherlands' history, it was at one point a largely Christian nation and in an attempt to break from that have ended up with places like a red-light district and coffee houses. After a time of living it up, the citizens are starting to realize what's happened to the their society and families as a result of it. That's one of the reasons why places like the red-light district now face legislation.

As an entrepreneurial adventure, why don't you purchase a shop downtown, take a year or two and have your daughters or cousins or neices sit barely clothed in the windows under red lights so that men passing by can objectify them or solicit them for sex acts...then, after seeing the effects it has on them, determine (objectively of course) if you think we should start those up elsewhere or even have a whole red light district of our own... Of course, you could be fine with it, but I promise you many other won't be. There's a reason you don't usually find hookers in upscale neighbourhoods...

But we're straying from the topic here now.... My statement was that the treatment rates have increased since the drug policy has taken effect, suggesting a trend rather than the rates of last year... And I believe we're talking about a legislation that was passed here and the issues we have with that. You quote stats related to Denmark citing different legislations and nearly identical results, which emphasizes my point about spending money on one versus the other...and why bother changing. Then you compare Italy, Spain and Switzerland with the Netherlands which brings me back to the entire argument about the societies themselves. I have the privilege of knowing people from many European countries - personally I mean. Have you ever taken a trip through Europe? Have you ever sat and talked with people who visit here who currently live in any European country? I don't mean sitting down with the guys on James St talking about the "old country" either. The reason I'm asking is because it seems like you don't understand the wide range of cultures in Europe... My post said nothing about "Europe" compared to here, it said "Holland" and the reason for that is because it's being used as an example of what some people feel drug policy should be like.

In an earlier post, you said "we currently pay for enforcement & rehab, because enforcement doesn't work." Enforement alone never works and neither does rehab alone. The Dutch policy still uses a balance between the two. As does the Danish policy... I'm not suggesting enforcement alone, I'm simply saying that there's nothing wrong with increasing the mandatory sentence when for drug crimes. I'd also like to go back to the original post which says something like if you're going to use heroin you'll use it whether it's illegal or not...presumably trying to make a case for legalization. My response would be: However, someone who's just thinking of using heroin (i.e. not "going" to use it) could quite easily be deterred from using it because it is illegal. That original statement is logic akin to "if you're going to get drunk, you'll drink." Duh!

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