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Top 10 Reasons Why Legal Highs Should Stay Legal

By John Clarke

Last week’s ban on a few legal highs will certainly do more to harm the public than keeping them legal. Here are 10 ways in which every sensible legal highs user has just been shafted:

#1 – Don’t associate with dodgy people

Drug DealerSelling legal highs can be done by a legitimate business. Since these businesses aren’t breaking the law, engaging in any other kind of illegal behaviour (guns, violence, money laundering, etc) is a massive risk. People that deal illegal drugs are already breaking the law – if they get caught, they’re going to prison for a long time. Breaking the law a second time is no longer such a big deal, especially if the price is right. Not only do you get the safety of dealing with an organisation that doesn’t want to break the law, but you’re also not seen with any dodgy characters, whether that’s meeting up on a street corner, visiting their house or them turning up at your place at a suspicious frequency.

#2 – Comparison Shopping

We all live in hope that one day we could type in RateMyWeedDealer.com, find the best prices in town and arrange for a delivery. Fortunately, as customers of legitimate products, legal highs fans can shop around to their heart’s content. Selling something for more than you should be? Then no one will buy it! It’s as simple as that, so, not only can customers get a better deal by shopping around, this behaviour also encourages healthy competition between legal highs vendors. Another plus for the customer!

#3 – Buyer Protection

Perhaps RateMyWeedDealer.com is a long way off, but what about just ringing your dealer to complain about something? Inadequate packaging? Does the product weigh half as much as you were promised? Unfortunately, I doubt your dealer gives a shit. Luckily, for legal highs consumers, most sites out there have some form of customer service, and if they can’t resolve things, facilities for refunds or chargebacks exist to protect the customer.

#4 – A Strength For Everyone

The sheer number of similar products available mean there is usually a strength for every occasion. Want a bit of an energy boost for work? Caffeine! Want to go to a rave all night? Synthetics! Want to go to a rave but it’s not going to be a “big one” because you’ve got work in the morning, and, let’s face it, your joints and muscles aren’t what they used to be? Something herbal!

I think asking an illegal drug dealer for something cheaper and less effective would be a world first.

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#5 – Diversity

Not only is there a range in price and strength, there’s also an incredible range of effects available. Clear headed stimulation, total euphoria, intense rushes, powerful relaxants, shit that makes you laugh – whatever you want, there’s probably something available somewhere that will do the trick. In the world of illegal drugs, that kind of product diversity could only be maintained via a database of epic proportions containing your millions of “hookups” and your own data entry guy.

#6 – Passing A Drug Test

Drug TestingSome people might thing it’s unfair that their co-workers can party all night on a litre of vodka, sleep for a few hours in a bathtub alongside their own sick and eventually drive to work still pissed, while they get fired for smoking a bit of weed after work. Sure, people should get fired if they let their abuse of any substance interfere with their work, but some people may feel that what they get up to in their own time is their own business. These people may feel drug tests are massive breach of their privacy, so it’s a good job that they have a legal alternative to turn to, since they shouldn’t show up on drug tests.

#7 – Friends More Likely To Do The Right Thing

People that overdose on illegal drugs will sometimes go without the treatment they need to avoid any legal trouble for themselves or their friends. Perhaps a friend might not tell the doctor what someone else has taken for fear of getting their mate into trouble. With legal highs, there’s no risk of prosecution so a) people can fully disclose what they’ve taken and could even present the doc with the original packaging and b) the quantity of chemicals in pills or powders will be consistent between batches…

#8 – Batch Consistency

Not only can doctors share notes on specific products, but users can too. It’s no good trying to compare ecstasy pills from different ends of the country, since the contents are likely to vary wildly, even if they share the same stamp. With legal highs, that’s a different story. Consistency between brands and batches facilitates a great deal of discussion not only on how good they are, but also harm reduction. Occasionally manufacturers do change their ingredients, but it only takes a short while for the changes to reach the entire country.

#9 – The Government Could Learn A Thing Or Two

Straight away, the fact that the legal highs industry even exists tells us that people want to get high and that people think the current drug laws are stupid. There’s one massive lesson that could be learned from it though – why not use it as a model for eventually legalising cannabis and the rest? Instead of trying to ban every new substance before anyone has died, why not look at regulating their sales with similar legislation to alcohol and tobacco? If we as a country could get this right with legal highs, we could see if it works or not and them maybe think of abolishing our current bullshit excuse for a drugs law.

#10 – Taxes

PoundHere’s a list of taxes that illegal drug dealers don’t pay:

  • Personal Income Tax
  • National Insurance
  • Corporation Tax
  • VAT

If legal highs remained legal and were taxed like alcohol and tobacco, the government would even more money on top of the taxes above that they already receive. These products are relatively harmless compared with alcohol, for example, which hospitalises 1200 people a day and costs the NHS at least £2 billion to deal with, so a tax on them wouldn’t be paying for the damage they’d cause to society – they’d be making the government a massive profit to spend on more doctors, nurses, medical research and fucking moats!

Nice one, G’ Brown!

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7 Responses to Top 10 Reasons Why Legal Highs Should Stay Legal

  1. Brett says:

    I know that guy in the picture with the money and nunchucks!
    I’m laughing so hard right now.

  2. Corey says:

    Dude everything your saying is so true, we need people like u in higher power.

  3. Top Cat says:

    RE: #10 – the UK Govt. lost £600 million in import taxes when they imposed the Cathinone import ban on 29th March 2010…

    Also I’m agreed with the film Layer Cake..

  4. blabla says:

    excepting points 5 b& 10, this is all BULLSHIT

  5. Mike says:

    All very valid points. Its a pity that the Government Ministers and those in the Home Office don’t actually listen to people like you.

    It seems that if you are coherent and capable of forming a balanced opinion based on facts and your own “real life” experience of a subject, then those in a position of authority appear intimidated and chose to ignore what they are being told that they should do in favour of what they think those that pay their wages will want to hear.

    Synchronium get our vote !.

  6. methylone says:

    It is so nice to see somebody that can actually take a step back and look at the big picture. Every point on this list makes complete sense. In the US, legislatures in certain states have made it public enemy #1, putting an emergency ban on some of the more popular RC’s under the falsehood that it is being done because “the general public is in immediate danger of this scourge.” The ignorance is unbelievable.

  7. fiona says:

    I have no idea who manufactures these RC’s; but I assume they have a choice between say a crystal meth lab, or making RC’s. With the obvious risks associated with making crystal meth, I can see why people would rather operate legitimately, and keep ahead of the changing drug laws. So in other words, the manufacturers are savvy and choose to make RC’s, and they know people will enjoy their products.

    As you say, if you buy from a shop, you are buying from a business that wants to operate legally, rather from some dodgy guy. That has got to be a more relaxed environment. You can assume they would sell you a product that works, as the shop would want customer loyalty.

    There is the other side of things that I think if opens up new opportunities for drugs to people who do not know where to buy illegal drugs from. All RC’s sales are based on prior past experience. i.e. you’d buy something you used last time. Or you buy something because it’s supposed to be like an older one, you heard of, or tried ages ago.

    I just wish there was some advice about doses (damage limitation). Then again, if a packet re-seals I hope people are sensible not to take all the white powder at once. Whereas it’s currently a pantomime, where it’s ‘not for human consumption’ even though everybody knows it is really, but there cannot be any advice surrounding don’t use more than ….. at once.

    I still think you’re at risk of getting arrested if you’re found with some white powder on you. I still wouldn’t want to be caught with anything on me, but the theory is that once the toxicology is done, you’re OK. (you hope) whereas with other options…

    I read that the UK Government made £2million profit in import and VAT on mephedrone!

    The UK Government must be happy to get VAT money on any legal highs, and sweep it under the carpet for a while. That is until of course there is a media hoo-har, when somebody dies of one. Then it’s banned. Then it is the media who is dictating what ought to be legal then.

    As discussed here, there is a much bigger picture, and many personal reasons why somebody might opt for legal highs, or illegal drugs. It would be difficult for any Government to tolerate drug use, so the legal highs issue, is one way of sweeping it under the carpet, as long as people are sensible and don’t cause a media uproar.

    The issue I hate is the sensationalism surrounding legal highs. I think every generation has had drugs concerns and worries about what young(ish) people are doing. I think this is the topic of today, as were other things in the past.

    What I’m not clear on: Perhaps we can assume the risks are similar to illegal drugs, in terms of bad experiences, rather than legal highs being the worst thing ever, in terms of risk.

    I think with legal highs, or most drugs, you’re more likely to have a good experience, which causes the risk of addiction and drug tolerance. Whereas every generation has had propaganda videos showing bad experiences, which doesn’t exactly put people off anyway.

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