Draconian drug laws have perversed this society’s well-being and have been the main contributing force to much of our country’s drug problem. Counter-effective to what it was purposed to do, our politicians still stand by their biased, unintelligent and illogical views and beliefs. Over a decade later, the international war on drugs, has proven to be counter-effective and very much damaging to society. Certain countries like Portugal, Spain, Holland, Uruguay and even numerous states in America have taken this into account and relaxed drug laws and adopted a new attitude all together towards the abuse of drugs.
Mauritius, the so-called paradise of the Indian Ocean, home to 1.3 million people, very so often ranks in the top 10 of substance abuse per capita. Much cause for worry, considering the scarce facilities available to deal with this serious health issue. The blaming game is incessant and brutal, as to who is responsible. Much more cause for worry is the narrow-mindedness adopted by our politicians and fed to our nation and its deadly consequences.
What we need to accept is that people will always do drugs. Whether it’s alcohol, cigarettes or any other illegal substance. If we were to call a hypocritical war on drugs – we should also be calling a ban on alcohol, as it is much so a very damaging drug, whether in terms of society or inter-personally. Just like with alcohol, it’s the habit of consumption that is important. There are alcoholics and there are those who can have a responsible drink. Imagine being arrested for having a quiet drink at your home, losing your job, demonized as a society’s scapegoat and having a ban from travelling to other countries.
The point being, we need to properly educate ourselves, our families and most importantly our law-makers about drugs and ways to tackle such an issue. The consequences are too damaging for us to stand by our misinformed politicians who are sticking to their old rusty guns.
Synthetics otherwise known as Spice, Blackmamba etc are the most recent mind-bending substances to hit Mauritius. So much about this new wave of drugs is seriously alarming. We’d rather people stuck to their old-school substances of abuse rather than consumption of synthetics. Like with heroin for example, you would know what substance the person is addicted to, the expected withdrawals and the treatment to be given. These products that are being sold as synthetic marijuana; except for the synthetic cannabinoid, have nothing of marijuana-like properties about them and the ingredients that are used to make these differ from brand to brand and also differ in potency.
Our draconian laws have pushed our youth to these types of products. If you thought the usual old-school drugs were a serious problem to society, well this is like the horsemen of the apocalypse and soon to be Armageddon itself. Well informed substance abusers are screaming wolf at this product and warning their lesser informed friends about the dangers of these products.
Firstly, it’s marketing as synthetic marijuana, is probably one of the most damaging aspects of these drugs. Down-playing its dangers by association to this medicinal plant is very dangerous, luring a lot of people into thinking it’s safe from overdose and serious health issues like heart strokes and brain swelling and damages, not to mention psychotic disorders. Secondly, the ingredients used to make these so-called legal highs are very hard to pin-point and in no way suitable for human consumption. Thirdly the fact that these ingredients are unknown, control is almost like a far-away dream. Fourthly, the fact that our draconian laws restrict the use of marijuana, and the risks of imprisonment associated with natural marijuana, are pushing our youth towards this product.
Most of the arguments for opting for these products, is that the authorities are cracking too much on weed smokers and this very fact is making weed hard to get, thus the decrease of potency in weed due to planters cashing in their crops too early because of the crackdown.
Thinking we could crackdown on these products would be fooling ourselves. The right move would it be to give the youth of this country an alternative to alcohol? A downright legalization of all natural drugs would be too much to take in for this country’s fragile mindset. At least the decriminalization or legalization of the use of marijuana should be given serious consideration if we were to keep the next generation of this country off the synthetics. Psychosis would soon flourish among us and mental hospitals would have to be extended to accommodate the backlash of the consequences of those so-called legal highs in a few years from now. God save us from the storm that is coming!