An “as-yet unreleased statement” leaked to the world by Richard Branson “may be about to call on the governments of all countries to end the ‘war on drugs’ and decriminalise the use and possession of all illegal substances.”
In an extraordinary post on his Virgin website, Richard Branson said he had been showed a report by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) which dramatically changed the organisation's stance on drug control.
He said the "as-yet unreleased statement" had been sent to some of the world's media under embargo - but that he has gone public with it early for fear the UN will "bow to pressure by not going ahead with this important move."
Good for Richard. Good for the UN too. (A sentence I never thought I would write.)
The UN was preparing to declare "unequivocally that criminalisation is harmful unnecessary and disproportionate", Branson wrote.
Which is all true. Recreational drug use is a victimless crime; as with all prohibition, the alleged cure proves worse than the disease—the war against drugs creating many more real victims than even the worst of the drug warriors would claim for the drugs themselves.
"Let us hope the UNODC, a global organisation that is part of the UN and supposed to do what is right for the people of the world, does not do a remarkable volte-face at the last possible moment and bow to pressure by not going ahead with this important move. The war on drugs has done too much damage to too many people already."
(Hat tip AB)