V.P. Biden in Honduras, Talks Drug Legalization
By: Amanda Bourlier
Vice President Joe Biden visited Honduras this past week to meet with Central American leaders leading up to April’s Summit of the Americas. The theme of Biden’s visit was drug trafficking, an ever-present problem for Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico, and other nations represented during his visit. Weighing especially heavy on Central American politicians and drug enforcement agencies is the possibility of the U.S. decriminalizing certain drugs, namely marijuana. Legalization has been gaining support within the United States, although it is opposed by many Latin American countries that have long cited illicit U.S. demand for drugs as a significant factor in continued drug-related violence within their borders. Biden, however, assured Central American leaders that the United States would not engage in legalization while the Obama administration remained in power. He instead stressed the United States’ continued support of conventional law enforcement and criminal justice measures.
In addition to social motives, some have suggested legalizing some currently illegal drugs in the United States in light of the limited progress in the war on drugs. Proponents of this notion liken it to alcohol and prohibition, arguing that legalization will bring the trade into the open, where it can be overseen by governments and other actors. Others, however, point out that drug cartels extend their criminal activity far beyond drug trade, meaning that legalization is not likely to crowd them out. In that case, legalization would be likely to only increase their profits and power.Explore posts in the same categories: Uncategorized