End Drug Prohibition

Background Information

DownsizeDC.org explained our basic philosophy behind our opposition to Drug Prohibition in the blog post "Whose Body Is It?" in October, 2009

If you are a religious believer from the Judeo-Christian tradition, who believes that some drugs should be illegal because using them would be immoral, we encourage you to read Joel Miller's essay from the year 2000: "One Toke Over the Line, Sweet Jesus?"

On data relating to drugs and drug prohibition, please visit DrugWarFacts.com

On the Constitutionality of drug prohibition, DownsizeDC.org made this argument in 2009:

Drug control is NOT a Constitutional power of the federal government. At the very most the federal government could, perhaps, ban the importation of drugs and prohibit their sale across state lines under the Commerce Clause of Article I, Section 8.

But nowhere in the Constitution is Congress empowered to prohibit the sale or possession of any item within state boundaries. The Tenth Amendment dictates that whatever Congress is not empowered to do must be left to the States, or to the people. This means Congress cannot . . .

  • forbid the personal possession or use of drugs
  • prohibit drug sales within the same state
  • intervene in other countries with money or troops to fight undeclared drug wars
This means that drug prohibition laws can only exist at the state level. Imagine what could happen if some states had no prohibition laws, while other states had prohibition laws of differing severity. Competing claims about drug prohibition could be tested, in the real world. As it is . . .

Federal prohibition laws not only prohibit the sale and use of drugs, they also prohibit us from learning what would work best.

The 10th Amendment’s Constitutional restrictions on federal power used to be well-known and understood. For instance, those who wanted to prohibit alcohol in the 1910's knew that the Constitution didn’t give Congress the power to do this. So they had to pass the 18th Amendment, ratified in 1919.

Alcohol prohibition was a failure, so in 1933 the 21st Amendment repealed the 18th Amendment.

If prohibiting alcohol required a Constitutional Amendment, how does prohibiting other drugs NOT require a Constitutional Amendment?

It’s an important question. To ignore the Constitutional process is to ignore the rule of law. No matter how one feels about drug use, the rule of law, especially as applied to government power, is essential to protecting our lives, freedoms, and property.

Send a letter to Congress

We provide the first few words of the letter so that Congressional offices will see the most important point right at the start, and so that no one can hijack our system for another purpose. Here's the part we provide . . .

End Drug Prohibition.
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