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Legalising drugs Ethical Frameworks- Utilatarianism and Natural Law Theroy

Sylvia Doyle

on 24 May 2010

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Transcript of Drugs

DRUGS Modern Ethical Issues Sylvia Doyle Tonight- Should Drugs Be Legal nearly 60% of 15-20 year olds taking drugs Should drug use be legal and in which philosophical framework do the proponents or otherwise of legalised drugs operate? Utilatarianism or Natural Law Theory? Are Drugs an Issue in Mackay? 83% of young people in Mackay have been exposed to drugs
58% have used illegal drugs - that's 3 in 5
We're on Drugs We're Not Australia Wide
16.6% or 1 in 6 have taken drugs recently Natural Law Theory Deontological Rule based Developed by Aristotle
“everything is created for a particular purpose and fulfilling this purpose is the ‘good’ to which everything aims” (Jenkins, 2003) St Thomas Aquinas developed this theory
Says Natural Law Theory is “the rational understanding and following of God’s final purpose” (Jenkins, 2003)
Based upon God's Teachings
The Catechism- forbids the use of drugs as they are harmful substances which damage the user’s health and life and undermine the moral law (Cardinal Ratzinger, 1994) Sergeant Gerry Doyle “I believe that it slowly but surely destroys the young person’s ability to have control over their own lives. Because of their subsequent behaviour they inevitably sever their support networks including family and friends” (Doyle, 2010)
Said- Mackay has a large drug problem Utilitarianism “Queensland Government adopts Australia’s harm minimisation approach that focuses on both licit and illicit drugs and includes preventing anticipated harm and reducing actual harm” (Mulherin, 2010)
The LNP and Greens Party support this Christianity has influenced Australian Laws Utilitarianism is a teleological ethical framework ->consequences determine the action (Jenkins, 2003)
John Stuart Mill, (1806 to 1873) advocated Utilitarianism and stated:
"That the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others" (Riley, 2006).
People should have the right to use drugs if they are not harming themselves (Riley, 2006)
Education should be used to discourage drug use (Inciardi, 1990)
Argue society will benefit from:
less crime
better care for addicts
less money spent enforcing laws (Duffy, 2009) Australia Netherlands Natural Law Theory
prohibits drug use
Say drugs are harmful therefore never ok
eliminating crime does not take away “an individual’s health care needs, living expenses, support programs, law and justice outcomes” (Doyle, 2010)
allows drug use
argue that legalising is way to decrease crime
“If the EU legalised drugs, then there would be less crime in the Netherlands as people would have access to drugs in their own country” (Tillmans P. , 2010) "It’s not just a matter of dealing with the taking, selling and production of drugs, but also the associated offences that are committed such as stealing, breaking into premises and robberies that are committed by drug addicts to support their addiction" (Doyle, 2010) AUSTRALIA Jonathon Dykyj
Greens candidate Mackay “The Greens do not support the legalisation of illicit drugs (we) take a harm minimisation and harm reduction approach to drugs” (Dykyj, 2010) Tim Mulherin
ALP Minister for Mackay three key initiatives
supply reduction
demand reduction
harm reduction
“despite the best efforts of government it is enviable that individuals will use drugs whether they have the right to do so or not” (Mulherin, 2010) Lawrence Spingborg
Deputy Opposition Leader “introduction of tough new provisions (as) tougher sentencing is needed for… serious drug trafficking and serious drug supply” (Springborg, 2010) MACKAY 63% People who want legal drugs Data shows that older people with kids espouse a Natural Law idealogy People who think drugs will have an adverse effect 63% 43% 38% 43% use drugs to cope
38% use drugs for the experience Drugs Affect Everyone Affects both individual and society
Natural Law Theory argues "All problems result from the violation of natural law"(2004)
Utilitarianism argues legalising allows society to better deal with drug issues
Natural Law Theorists say “there is sufficient evidence (that legalising drugs) would have an adverse effect for the Mackay community” (Mulherin, 2010) as in Alcohol and tobacco issues
Mackay has a “residential drug rehabilitation service for people who volunteer to overcome their addiction” (Mulherin, 2010)
Is what's Legal always Right?
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