Have you heard the one where the mass-murderer is free to roam while the petty thief is let off?

A conundrum has occurred to me that I just can’t quite figure out, so here’s one for you readers, and I know you are reading.

What is the difference between cigarettes, alcohol, and illegal drugs with regards to physical side effects or potential for addiction?*

If you arrived at the same answer for the above question as I did – that the differences are negligible, then why are they treated so differently in terms of availability, legality or social implications? Following on from this, why are alcohol and tobacco legal, advertised, encouraged and accepted and illegal drugs not?

On the flipside, if you conclude that there are substantial differences (in the actual physical effects, including addictiveness) between the three, then what are they?

If you’re only going to reply to one of my blog posts ever, please make it this one. I’d like to know.

Additional information: A quick search found http://www.tdpf.org.uk/MediaNews_FactResearchGuide_DrugRelatedDeaths.htm. Scroll down to see a table listing deaths attributable to various illegal drugs, along with tobacco and alcohol

*By which I mean it is widely known that cigarettes are addictive, increase your chances of cancer, which can cause health problems leading to an early death. Similarly alcohol causes multiple symptoms – impaired judgement, falsely increased confidence and so on, which can bring about injury and death, along with damaging the liver and potentially being addictive. Various illegal drugs can also achieve a variety of these things, causing long term health problems, death, and addiction.


About Jack
A small-time traveller in a big-time world

One Response to Have you heard the one where the mass-murderer is free to roam while the petty thief is let off?

  1. I believe this one is all about tax revenue. If cigarettes and alcahol were made illegal, firstly their would be public outcry on a scale never seen before, and secondly the loss of funds generated by the high tax on sales of these products would be drastic.

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