Well, no doubt if more drugs were legal, more Americans would being doing them to get high, just like alcohol.
The fact is that alcohol consumption was decreasing from 1910 thru 1920, when the Volstead Act was introduced. As the result of the distribution chaos caused by Volstead, consumption spiked down further...for about a year
. After that, consumption of alcohol continued to rise throughout prohibition.
Source: Clark Warburton, The Economic Results of Prohibition (New York: Columbia University Press, 1932), pp. 23-26, 72.
So, would it be fair to say that Prohibition increases the use of illegal drug substances? Of course not. But it would be just as absurd to claim, absent any source whatsoever that prohibition causes a decrease
in use of such substances. Anecdotally, one need only look at the statistics from the WoSD to draw conclusion here.
But three things are for certain:
- Prohibition does not stem the ready supply of inferior and often poisonous substitutes for previously available drugs.
- Prohibition costs society BILLIONS per year in incarceration, police investigation and welfare payments.
- Prohibition costs ALL Americans a very real price in terms of their rights to privacy, free movement and safety when confronted by the Police.
The arguments in favor of continuing the current failed WoSD inevitably fall back on unsubstantiated BogeyMan rhetoric.