Who’s been saying what..? DDN’s round-up of what’s being said in the national papers
The sad fact is that when any drug is found to be fun – for partying, for pleasure or even for spirituality – it gets stamped on and made illegal. Once that happens, research is made incredibly difficult and the potential of the drug is ignored.
Sue Blackmore, Guardian, 4 April
Ninety-four per cent of the Guardian/Mixmag [Global Drug Survey’s] UK respondents were white and 65 per cent were men, which doesn’t really represent UK drug culture at all. It doesn’t make the survey worthless – a big self-selecting sample is still a big sample – but any conclusions have to be taken with a serious pinch of salt. In particular, I suspect people who buy drugs online are much more likely to fill in online surveys than the average drug user. Ultimately, the story isn’t a survey of ‘UK drug users’ but a survey of ‘middle-class white men who read the Guardian and fill out online surveys’.
Willard Foxton, Telegraph, 14 April
As recently as 1960, Scotland had one of the lowest liver cirrhosis death rates in western Europe and now we have one of the highest. The transformation of the alcohol environment over the past few decades has been nothing short of spectacular… Asking people to exercise restraint in their drinking behaviour, in an environment that promotes both access and excess, is an approach that will always be limited in its ability to effect meaningful change.
Dr Evelyn Gillan, Scotsman, 10 April
Last week the Treasury revealed a quarter of tax revenue goes on social security excluding pensions… In the perverse, morally inverted world of modern welfare, reckless fecundity brings the reward of a home beyond the dreams of average Britons.
Express editorial, 7 April
If the NHS was run like a proper business, it would have filed for bankruptcy years ago and gone the way of other inefficient, loss-making state monoliths such as British Leyland and the National Coal Board. Every incoming government enters office with a promise to rescue the health service… But each reorganisation simply serves to make things worse.
Richard Littlejohn, Mail, 11 April
Cartels are the public demon so many of us love to hate. But a public focus on them essentially deflects attention from the way in which other players – like the US government – are not only complicit, but even run the show.
Gabriel Matthew Schivone, Guardian, 10 April
Risk, you see – the ‘risk’ cannabis could send you mad, or give you brain damage – is not something the young understand well. The young, remember, are invincible. Risks are for other people.
Martha Gill, Telegraph, 16 April
Once again, while myopic politicians preach tired sermons pioneered by President Richard Nixon about defeating the scourge of narcotics, there is a safer and more sensible alternative if only they displayed a little courage.
Ian Birrell, Guardian, 26 April