Some readers may disagree, but to visit Amsterdam is to be struck by its seediness. The view here is that the latter is driven by the legality of marijuana possession and usage. Except that what this calls for is broad legalization, not the exercise of more governmental force. If politicians and do-gooders would just let people be, they would be less likely to gather in the few places where they’re allowed to just be.
New York Times columnist Ross Douthat plainly disagrees with the legalization argument. That he does, and since he’s wise, his recent column suggesting legalization has failed was read with great interest. Surely he would make some great points? Much to my surprise, he didn't. Worse, his arguments often weren’t recognizable as ones made by legalization proponents, and if they were recognizable, they weren’t original or compelling.