but its not a silver bullet!
have you ever heard such a nonsensical objection to a proposed policy reform? “Oh if its not a single-point solution, we’re not going to bother trying.”
decriminalization is necessary to enable the rest of the solution.
and it is through our connections to larger movements that our movement (when successful) will dissolve into. it is a fact that decriminalization is about Black Lives Matter and defunding the police, not about consolidating the carceral state. the police must not be involved (yes they can go decriminalize themselves) in defining or deciding what decriminalization means! its through public discourse that we will reduce discrimination and bring people in. just by talking these things, our lives, openly.
- stop centring ourselves, this is a social/political issue that impacts everyone
- emphasize the economic sinkhole of criminalization
- the drug war is racist, and a consequence of colonialism. defund the police.
- safe supply does decriminalize. thats why we ask doctors – among the most powerful people in cdn society – to step up for us and prescribe. to defy the aura of criminal association.
- when people object to the possibility of profound social change, thats how you know its necessary.
- nothing about prohibition, the drug war, criminalization – none of this is natural or inevitable or necessary. its our world, lets change it.
- STOP TALKING ABOUT YOURSELF. talk about the impacts on the people you’re trying to convince. talk about the public interest – how even non-criminalized people will benefit from a decriminalized society.
i’m tired of having to say that drug users should be at the centre of this and set the terms. that shouldnt need to be said. meet us where we’re at. catch up.
a public discussion is itself a process of decriminalization, since the goal is for drug users to simply be part of the public. to become boring regular people – rather than Those People. that’s the goal.
as long as users continue to be Those People, our deaths (and lives) aren’t real and nothing will change.
we don’t want compassion : we need the public to see themselves in us, to identify with us. not a brother, cousin, mother, or son. but to see us (the living) as themselves.
we need to do everything we can to bridge that gap too. what Decriminalization will look like is up to us.
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