Sunday, March 4, 2007

You Need Drugs To Understand the UN

All hail the mighty UN for surely it has finally found an issue that it can really sink its teeth into!

We're not talking about the slaughter in Darfur or the nuclear crisis in Iran or anything to do with the Israeli/palestinian situation. Nor is the topic for discussion human rights or starving children or even the environment.

Instead, the UN has fastened itself on to Vancouver and a few other cities/countries around the globe that offer drug addicts safe injection sites.

Seems those sites contravene a very, very important 1961 UN agreement where countries, including Canada, agreed not to treat drug addicts as anything other than the criminal scum God intended them to be treated as. Toss 'em in jail or let 'em die on the streets but never treat them with dignity or at least with enough conscience to provide relatively safe haven.

Since Vancouver opened its clean injection site several years ago, it seems to have gone some ways to alleviating the transmission of infectious diseases as well as helping to cut down on overdoses. There are, admittedly, some drawbacks, there has been some question about the peddling of drugs in its general vicinity.

Vancouver, facing a tough drug problem exascerbated by being a major port city with many Asian connections where the drugs come from as well as being one of the few places in Canada where people can live on the streets year-round without freezing, chose a humanitarian approach. In doing so, it joined other world cities with a more liberal outlook on drug use.

Iraq looks like a smooth military operation compared to the so-called war on drugs. In its latest incarnation, the poppy eradication program in Afghanistan is fuelling support for the Taliban. Going after growers ekeing out subsistence wages and addicts in the streets is not going to cure the problem. The answers lie in treating addicts as suffering from a medical condition rather than as criminals.

For the UN to involve itself in such a trivial matter as safe injection sites is about par for the course. Powerless to solve any real problems, it singles out "western decadence" so that representatives to the august body can preen and prance at home about their importance.


Catherine said...

The UN is useless, and the "war on drugs" is a joke. The so-called "war on drugs" is keeping too many government employees too well-employed for them to want it to come to an end.

Michael said...

I think it's about time for the US to cancel all UN funding, and revoke the lease... See how long the organization lasts then, or if anyone misses it.

southfield_2001 said...

I agree wholeheartedly with both of you.

the Onion did a great bit a few years ago under the headline "Drugs Win War on Drugs". It's time we realized that you can't legislate everything you don't like out of existence.

As for the long ago lost its way and it's doubtful it can ever recover.