Time to end the war on drugs?

The discussion raised the following: it is time to end the drug war. The participant list was long and very interesting!
Yes, it’s time to end the war on drugs:
  • Fernando Henrique Cardoso – President of Brazil (1995-2002) and Member of the Club de Madrid
  • Vicente Fox – President of Mexico (2000-2006) and Member of the Club de Madrid
  • Misha Glenny – an award-winning writer and broadcaster.
  • Geoffrey Robertson QC – founder and head of Doughty Street Chambers, the UK’s largest human rights practice. He is also a member of the UN’s Justice Council and was the first president of its war crimes court in Sierra Leone.
  • Richard Branson – in 1970 at age 20, Richard founded Virgin as a mail order record retailer, and not long after he opened a record shop in Oxford Street, London and recording studio. Virgin Music became one of the top six record companies in the world.
  • Julian Assange – journalist and activist best known as the founder of WikiLeaks, the Internet based publisher making headlines around the world by releasing secret or suppressed information revealing government and corporate misconduct.
  • Russell Brand – a British comedian and actor.
  • Louise Arbour – the President & CEO of the International Crisis Group since July 2009.
  • Bernard Kouchner – Founder of Médecins sans Frontières and of Medecins du Monde.
  • Danny Kushlick – founder of Transform Drug Policy Foundation.
  • Johann Hari – British journalist and has been a columnist for the London Independent and the Huffington post.
  • Steve Rolles – Senior Policy Analyst for Transform Drug Policy Foundation where he has worked since 1998.
  • David Eagleman – neuroscientist, New York Times best selling author and Guggenheim Fellow who holds joint appointments in the Departments of Neuroscience and Psychiatry at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas.

No, it is not time to end the war on drugs:

  • Antonio Maria Costa – Director General of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime for an unprecedented two-term mandate, with the rank of UN Under-Secretary-General from 2002 until 2010.
  • Eliot Spitzer – former governor of New York.
  • Professor Neil McKeganey – founder and Director of the Centre for Drug Misuse Research in Glasgow.
  • Lord Ian Blair – police officer for 35 years and served as Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police in London (‘Scotland Yard’) from 2005 to 2008.
  • Dr Nigel Keegan – investment banker and former army medical officer.
  • Ed Vulliamy – British journalist and writer.
  • Peter Hitchens – Columnist for the Mail on Sunday
  • Theodore Dalrymple – British writer and former physician and psychiatrist.
  • Barry R. McCaffrey – retired United States Army general, news commentator, and business consultant.

After the debate, the Google+ spectators voted with the first group. This is a very relevant debate… What do you reckon?

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