Drug War Peace Treaty (First Draft)
Chris Conrad & Mikki Norris, Family Council on Drug Awareness
Preamble: We, the people, did not choose the rhetoric of warfare as an element of drug policy. We did not declare war on our government, nor do we physically attack its institutions. We do not wish to become combatants or casualties in the ever-escalating police actions of our own government. Yet, for decades, ordinary citizens have been subject to the unprovoked violence and suffered cruel and unusual punishments in this politically motivated and one-sided Drug War. Having borne more injustice than our patriotic forebears ever would have endured, we now call for a truce in the drug war to engage our government in negotiating a peace treaty, as follows:
Whereas the determination whether or not to consume any substance or medication is a very personal decision reflecting free choice and individual preferences of lifestyle and social pastime;
Whereas the legitimate power of any just government is derived from a mutual respect of the government's laws by its people, and of the people's rights by their government; and
Whereas the existing bureaucracy has made no effort to resolve this matter in a humane and negotiated manner, but has unilaterally pursued a military / police option with little discussion and no regard for its harm to families, individuals and human rights;
Therefore, on behalf of the American people, we declare this Drug War is ended. We agree to eliminate the black market in drugs and the government agrees to abide by the following terms of agreement:
Article 1: As a token of good faith, there shall be an immediate truce and release of all non-violent and otherwise (aside from drug charges) law abiding citizens held as Drug War prisoners by either side. All pending non-violent drug charges shall be dropped.
Article 2: The sovereignty of both citizen and state being the basis of domestic law, the United States shall withdraw from and repudiate the Single Convention Treaty on Narcotic Drugs and any other international agreement or treaty which limits its ability to settle our domestic drug dispute.
Article 3: Medicinal use of any substance is the private decision of the patient with the guidance of a health care provider and should be as free as possible from government interference. No patient shall be prosecuted nor any physician penalized for use of mutually agreeable medications.
Article 4: Cultural distinctions being a natural and inherently enriching aspect of civilization, choice of intoxicants or mood altering drugs is a human right, as long as they are consumed in a safe and responsible manner.
Traditional drug crops shall be allowed in all communities and areas where they have been historically produced and used.
Article 5: Consistency and fairness being the foundations of justice, persons involved with drugs retain all their inalienable, human and constitutional rights without exception. Government agents who engage in illegal activities and entrapment or provoke the breaking of laws shall be held fully accountable and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
Article 6: The role of law enforcement being to protect the rights, freedoms, properties and personal safety of the people, no consensual drug activity undertaken by two or more adults shall be considered a crime unless a charge of damages is filed by an affected private party. Personal use of drugs is a private matter and exempt from government oversight.
Article 7: Protection of public safety being a valid concern of government, being under the influence of a substance shall not be a valid legal defense, and every individual shall be held fully responsible for their own actions. Performance and coordination tests, not forensics, shall be applied to determine impairment in the investigation of reckless or negligent operation of a motor vehicle.
Article 8: The private sector being the most capable and effective response mechanism to supply and demand, government involvement in the manufacture and distribution of drugs shall be regulatory rather than direct. Such regulation may be held analogous to the wine model. Commerce in drugs shall be subject to the same legal and ethical standards as any other business.
Article 9. The elimination of the black market in illegal drugs being a primary purpose of this agreement, persons already engaging in the marketing of illicit drugs shall be given the opportunity to legitimize their operations without penalties for prior illegal activities. Testimony of satisfied customers shall be presented in support of such application.
Article 10: The health and welfare of the people being a rightful concern of government, the following harm reduction measures shall be implemented:
- 1. Age of consent for social drug use shall be determined by the local community. Care shall be taken to preserve the family unit. Policies shall be designed to protect family properties and to avoid disruption and separation of the parent/child relationship. Collection of a body of unbiased medical research shall be encouraged.
- 2. Children shall be discouraged from drug use. Education shall be accurate based on personal safety measures, the relative risks involving such substances, and the importance of waiting until adulthood. It shall stress positive behavior patterns and promote abstinence, tolerance and personal responsibility.
- 3. Cannabis shall be separated from other drugs through a lower age limit of 18 years and by permitting open concessions of soft drugs, including cannabis seeds, plants, clones, cured flowers and resins that are free of contaminants. Package labeling shall accurately describe its contents and weight, include a potency rating, and list all additives.
- 4. Policies shall favor substances in their natural raw form and discourage use of hard drugs. Drug crops may be legally and commercially cultivated and distributed with a permit from the proper oversight agencies in agriculture and public health. Package labeling shall accurately describe all contents, potency, dosage recommendations and list all additives.
- 5. Chemical compounds derived from such plants shall be regulated with synthetic pharmaceuticals and kept available at a pharmacy level. Restrictions on access shall be based on an impartial and uniform standard of health risk assessments and addictive potential. Package labeling shall accurately describe its chemical content, recommended dosage, health warnings, and symptoms of overuse. Accurate information shall be included on responsible use, and the physical and mental effects of the compounds taken alone or in combination with other drugs.
- 6. Private shamanistic, religious, spiritual or other psychological training shall be recommended before anyone's first use of hallucinogens. Persons exhibiting addictive or abusive behavior shall be encouraged to undergo humane treatment.
- 7. Clean syringes and non-judgmental health care information shall be made available to intravenous drug users to prevent the spread of infections via shared needles. To prevent addicts from engaging in property crimes, physically addictive drugs shall be made available through the public health care system at an affordable cost. To clean up the streets, communities shall provide a sanitary indoor environment and discreet health care supervision for intravenous drug users.
Article 11: The national debt being a pressing problem, all foreign aid for anti-drug programs shall be terminated immediately. This includes the transfer or export of herbicides and equipment intended for drug surveillance and eradication operations.
Article 12: Violent crime being a serious problem, narcotics police agencies, personnel and resources shall return to normal law enforcement investigations and prosecutions of violent and property crimes to protect the public.
Article 13: Police resources being scarce, specialized forces and surveillance equipment shall be used to combat terrorists, toxic polluters, criminal fraud, and illegal arms traffickers.
Article 14: Bribery being a form of corruption, testimony given in exchange for money payments, reduced penalties, or commission on forfeited goods or assets shall not be used in a court of law.
Article 15: Property rights being central to our social order, no property or assets may be taken by the government without due process and just compensation. A jury shall be required to determine the validity of any such government claims and seizures.
Article 16: Urine testing being an inaccurate, invasive and costly process and an affront to human dignity, it shall not be required for employment, insurance, parole, probation, or access to government benefits or programs. This ban shall apply to all other chemical tests for inert compounds.
Article 17: Commercial farming and production of non-drug industrial cannabis sativa, L. or true hemp products shall be resumed and encouraged in proportion to its value as a commodity and shall not be subject to any drug enforcement oversight.