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Drugs: Legalize or Prohibit?

30' (GER, ENG subs)
In the seemingly hopeless battle against drugs, one country may be paving the way to a solution.

They are forbidden yet seductive. Drugs have always raised a certain level of fascination and curiosity, and every day, more people give into this fascination. Whether it’s Cannabis, cocaine, or XTC, obtained on the street or internet, the consumers can get practically anything they want. Although the production, distribution, and consumption are prohibited in almost every country in the world, there have never been more drugs in circulation than today. The “war on drugs” declared by the USA in 1972 seems to have failed, but Portugal may be on track to a solution. What else can be done?  Is a legislation that legalizes all drugs realistic, and what would be the consequences? Learn about the use of drugs as a hobby, the lucrative business of the drug mafia, and the progressive ideas in the fight against drugs.

For 50 years, nations have tried nearly every tactic to prevent drug use. They have criminalized the production, trade, and consumption of numerous substances in the hope that drug users will be deterred. However, this does not work, as we now know. There have never been more drugs cultivated and produced than current day.

Drug quantities transported along international trade routes are at an all time high, along with personal drug consumption. Whether it is cocaine from Columbia, heroin from Afghanistan, ecstasy from Holland, or crystal meth from Eastern European laboratories, drugs can be found among all demographics. The UN World Drug Report for 2017 shows that a record number of 271 million people worldwide used illegal substances last year.

One of them is Paul who has a very non-conventional hobby: drugs. The 26-year old is a so-called psychonaut. Psychonauts are individuals who experiment with drugs in order to explore one’s own psyche and consciousness, to try and shift the boundaries of their perception. Paul has consumed about 50 different substances.
Cocaine and ecstasy are on the way to becoming an everyday commodity. These drugs are high on the radar of the World Commission of Narcotics.

The organization is calling for change to drug policy, favoring state control over complete prohibition. In Europe, Portugal is the most progressive country when it comes to drug policy. They have decriminalized drug consumption, and the results of this have shown to be very positive. Other countries are starting to catch on. What are the alternatives to prohibition? Is legalization of all drugs realistic, and what would be the consequences of this?
Original Title: Drogen - Legalisieren statt verbieten?
Year: 2020
Length: 30' (GER, ENG subs)
Resolution: HD
Produced by: NZZ

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    Screener - German with English subtitles
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