Monday, 4 April 2005

Drug culture in the 'Scottish highlands'

Pupils at Kingussie High School, in the Scottish highlands, are being subjected to random drug checks from police sniffer dogs.

Two other nearby schools are likely to follow suit after the Northern Constabulary gave warning that, even in one of Europe’s last great wildernesses, the area used to film the television drama Monarch of the Glen, the smoking of cannabis “is replacing a cigarette behind the bike shed”.

Why should this be any problem? Surely it's naive to believe that narcotics only exist in run down urban areas?

David Bell, an NHS consultant specialising in drug addiction, said last month that heroin was “spreading like a tide in the Highlands and Islands”. The warning came after Alastair MacDonald, the governor of Porterfield Prison in Inverness, said that the drug culture was “spreading like a cancer” in the Highlands.

If I were Mr. MacDonald, I would question why people who committed no damage or injury to others person or property should be imprisoned. Surely then the prisons would be avaiable for those who DO violate rights to person and property. I wonder what Mr. MacDonald's views are pertaining to the War on Drugs? Is he so blind (as a person working within the criminal justice system) to view that such a programme isn't functioning well enough?

The consumption or possession of narcotics should not be illegal. Simply taking drugs does not violate others' rights to person or property. However, with freedom comes responsbility. If a person, whilst 'high' or in a narcotic state infringes on others' person or property, they should be prosecuted.