Some conservatives and most libertarians have suggested that legalization might be a better way to handle the “drug problem.”
Portugal tried it.
As the sweeping reforms went into effect nine years ago, some in Portugal prepared themselves for the worst. They worried that the country would become a junkie nirvana, that many neighborhoods would soon resemble Casal Ventoso, and that tourists would come to Portugal for one reason only: to get high. “We promise sun, beaches, and any drug you like,” complained one fearful politician at the time.
(Which actually sounds like a tourist advertisement to me, but what do I know?)
The results were mixed, although one of the “negatives” reported seems sort of silly: more people have tried drugs. (Nah, y’think?) In any case, it’s worth reading the whole thing.