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Old 25th December 2006, 04:17 AM   #1
cubix
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Default Cocaine on 94 percent of Spanish banknotes

Saw this on Yahoo today. Is cocaine really a problem in Spain

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20061224/..._spain_cocaine
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Old 25th December 2006, 09:44 AM   #2
Edith
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Saw this on Yahoo today. Is cocaine really a problem in Spain

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20061224/..._spain_cocaine

If it's true, I find that quite sad. There is only one solution to the drug problem and that is 'just say no'.
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Old 25th December 2006, 01:30 PM   #3
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The police are also to start using roadside drug testing kits on drivers. It is seen as almost a big a problem as alcohol. That said the majority of drivers, and probably Spaniards, don't drive after using either - but that does not sell newspapers

From about a year ago - drug use in Europe

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Old 25th December 2006, 02:13 PM   #4
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The place I live has a population of 7,500 people and it's dead easy to pick up cocaine in any of the bars in town. Apparently it's as big amongst the old folk as it is amongst youngsters.

I may be wrong about this but I understand that Spain ranks second in the World for coke use after the US. My partner says that I have that wrong and Spain is second in Europe after the UK. Both could be true of course depending on whether it's raw numbers of users or percentages of population. Either way there's no doubt about it that coke is big in Spain.
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Old 25th December 2006, 04:56 PM   #5
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If it's true, I find that quite sad. There is only one solution to the drug problem and that is 'just say no'.

Let people do what they want. What we need is more information and freedom to decide and less moral judgements of any kind.

Why noy 'just saying no' to wine, to avoid the drinking problem?
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Old 25th December 2006, 06:11 PM   #6
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Let people do what they want. What we need is more information and freedom to decide and less moral judgements of any kind.
I bet you still believe in Father Christmas! What a sad comment.
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Old 25th December 2006, 09:22 PM   #7
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Let people do what they want. What we need is more information and freedom to decide and less moral judgements of any kind.

Why noy 'just saying no' to wine, to avoid the drinking problem?
Medical, not moral. I believe drugs are a mental health hazard. Even cannabis, which is relatively harmless in many cases, can cause psychotic behavior in people who have a previous history of mental problems. Psychiatric hospitals are filled with people whose symptoms have worsened (or even started) after experimenting with drugs. People always think that every person from Holland has a liberal attitude towards drugs - well, I don't, even though I believe our government's drug policy (e.g. supplying free needles and outpatient care to addicts or providing them with special 'user rooms') works. I do not believe in sending people to jail for using drugs.

http://www.trimbos.nl/default5465.html

P.s.: what is Spain's official drug policy? I would also like to know some more about the kind of medical treatment addicts receive in Spain.

Last edited by Edith; 25th December 2006 at 09:45 PM.
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Old 25th December 2006, 10:00 PM   #8
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Medical, not moral.
That is true, and everybody should be aware of the obvious problems, risks and downsides of drugs. I'm not saying drugs are good, if that is what you understood I didnīt make myself clear.

What I'm saying, is that not even doctors are to tell people what they have to do with their life. Doctors are to give information, prevention and cure.

Why should anyone be in a position to tell people what to do??. I am an adult and I have full capaticities and no one should put any limits to my freedom, even if the various options at my reach could be harmful.

I believe that, drugs, like everything else, can be good or bad depending on the use that you give them. But even if they were only wrong, it is only one's business, and nobody elses.

Junk food is also harmful, and so is tobacco, and alcohol. Even books and knowledge can be dangerous for someone.

We are adults, and we live in the age of information. Let us be free, even free to make mistakes.
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Old 25th December 2006, 10:27 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by parubin View Post
That is true, and everybody should be aware of the obvious problems, risks and downsides of drugs. I'm not saying drugs are good, if that is what you understood I didnīt make myself clear.

What I'm saying, is that not even doctors are to tell people what they have to do with their life. Doctors are to give information, prevention and cure.

Why should anyone be in a position to tell people what to do??. I am an adult and I have full capaticities and no one should put any limits to my freedom, even if the various options at my reach could be harmful.

I believe that, drugs, like everything else, can be good or bad depending on the use that you give them. But even if they were only wrong, it is only one's business, and nobody elses.



Junk food is also harmful, and so is tobacco, and alcohol. Even books and knowledge can be dangerous for someone.

We are adults, and we live in the age of information. Let us be free, even free to make mistakes.
Yes but at the present, cocaine and other substances are illegal and that status attracts a criminal element, which also occurred when alcohol was illegal in the US. The distribution of alcohol is curtailed from minors, where cocaine and other illegal substances are not. One should try to change legislation, not ignore it because it is inconvenient, otherwise people get hurt or worse. No one lives in a vacuum.
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Old 25th December 2006, 10:32 PM   #10
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I have to say I go along with the "leave people to decide" argument. In a way it doesn't hold water but then neither does letting someone else decide. In one direction lies some sort of totalitarian dictatorship and in the other lies some form of anarchy.

Society seems to be able to generally put the brakes on outrageous behaviour (not true if you were of the wrong tribe in Rwanda for instance) but if large numbers of what, to all intents and purposes, are normal, everyday, "well balanced" people choose to ignore laws (like illegal drug use), then it suggests that there may be something wrong with the legislation rather than the people.

There's always some form of information required to help people to make a good choice (I keep hoping that the 50+ year old Spanish men who habitually get into their Audis, Mercedes and BMWs having drunk a beer, a half bottle of wine and a brandy with their lunch will hear one of hose messages) but if I have to choose between a bit of anarchy and a bit of dictatorship then I think I'm with the anarchists
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Old 26th December 2006, 05:41 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Edith View Post
If it's true, I find that quite sad. There is only one solution to the drug problem and that is 'just say no'.
if this is the choice people make so be it. The fabric of society has clearly not fallen apart

Legalise it and tax it, it'll be less glamorous and less interesting - and the price of petrol could be lowered!!
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Old 26th December 2006, 07:10 PM   #12
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The article says that 1.6% of Spaniards are regular users. I don't know how "regular user" was defined, but for comparision, here are the latest numbers (from the Nat. Survey on Drug Use and Health -- a long running huge federal study) for the US population (I'd imagine UK figures would be similar):

2.3% of population (age 12 & up) used cocaine in past year
1.0% of population used cocaine in past 30 days

These numbers were 2-3x higher in the 1980s.

Right now in the US, we have a lot of screaming in the media about the methamphetamine "epidemic". In reality, rates of methamphetamine use are 0.5% and 0.2% for last year and past month use, respectively.
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Old 26th December 2006, 07:47 PM   #13
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Medical, not moral.
With respect, it IS a moral issue.

Many people who use "illegal" drugs end up doing stupid things that hurt innocent people. Yes, it is a moral issue.
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Old 26th December 2006, 10:49 PM   #14
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With respect, it IS a moral issue.

Many people who use "illegal" drugs end up doing stupid things that hurt innocent people. Yes, it is a moral issue.
I couldnīt agree less. Taking drugs donīt make you a criminal or stupid. Not at all. If you do stupid things under the influence of drugs (or alcohol) it means that you are already stupid even when sober.

The use of drugs can only hurt your health, and nobody else.

If you drive a car after drinking a bottle of whisky, it is not the evil liquid from Scotland's fault. It is only your stupidity to take the blame.

There is a lot of hypocrisy around this issue. Thinking something's not good for me doesnīt give you the right to ban it from everubody else.

I firmly believe in education, information and freedom to decide over the issues that are only of my concern. Because what anyone does in their free time, doesnīt go against anyone's freedom.

This way of thinking (making drugs illegal) is it of the same kind that they had in the middle ages, a sort of cultural inquisition. Back in those dark ages, the elite thought that books should be kept away from ordinary people, because the could have 'dangerous and stupid ideas' about how the society should be organized.

It is fine to say no to drugs, and I think that a drug-free society is way better than a druggy one. But it is people, as informed and adult individuals, the ones to decide not to take drugs.

As it was pointed out before, when we have stupid laws (such as banning drugs) a large number of well balanced individuals, decide to ignore such laws. And what we get from stupid laws that are largely ignored? Criminal activity (i.e. drug trafficking) around it.
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Old 26th December 2006, 11:16 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by parubin View Post
I couldnīt agree less. Taking drugs donīt make you a criminal or stupid. Not at all. If you do stupid things under the influence of drugs (or alcohol) it means that you are already stupid even when sober.
At the current time, taking illicit drugs is...illicit. Until the laws change, they are...criminal. And come on. You mean to tell me that being under the influence of illicit drugs doesn't modify your behavior? Studies prove that people are much more likely to do things that they would never do under the influence.

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Originally Posted by parubin View Post
The use of drugs can only hurt your health, and nobody else.
Tell me how the drunk driver who plows into the family van and kills them all is not stupid or criminal? In the US, about 40% of all traffic fatalities involve a drunk driver.

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Originally Posted by parubin View Post
If you drive a car after drinking a bottle of whisky, it is not the evil liquid from Scotland's fault. It is only your stupidity to take the blame.

There is a lot of hypocrisy around this issue. Thinking something's not good for me doesnīt give you the right to ban it from everubody else.
But nobody here is trying to take away your alcohol. However, if you think that smoking crack cocaine, or taking meth, or whatever doesn't destroy lives, then my points are already lost on you.

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Originally Posted by parubin View Post
I firmly believe in education, information and freedom to decide over the issues that are only of my concern. Because what anyone does in their free time, doesnīt go against anyone's freedom.
Therein lies the rub, doesn't it? Rarely can you make a delineation between the two.

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Originally Posted by parubin View Post
This way of thinking (making drugs illegal) is it of the same kind that they had in the middle ages, a sort of cultural inquisition. Back in those dark ages, the elite thought that books should be kept away from ordinary people, because the could have 'dangerous and stupid ideas' about how the society should be organized.
So, tell me, what positive or enlightening aspect is there to engaging in these things? The laws against illicit drugs are there not to restrict your personal freedom so much as it is to protect that of others.

This is definitely a volatile subject, and I'm certainly no expert, nor do I want to offend you, Parubin. I just say, that by and large, the use of these substances are difficult to regulate on a personal basis, and they most often affect the lives of those who love them.
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Old 26th December 2006, 11:37 PM   #16
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On the contrary Parubin - taking illegal drugs does, de facto , make you a criminal. There is an argument for de-criminalising the taking of drugs - prohibition has never really been a success.

Humans take drugs because (at the time) they make them feel better. Thats it. Legal or illegal thats the bottom line.

The effect that drugs have on third parties is no different whether legal or illegal - wiping out the bus queue is much the same if you are drunk or stoned.

There is MASS abuse of alcohol - a legal drug - in the UK, every weekend binge drinkers take over most town centres - fighting and fornicating ensue.

It is difficult, and a nightmare if you have kids, cigarettes, drink, pot, coke, heroine etc form the backbone of most parental nightmares - legal or illegal they are available and easily obtainable. I agree that education is the key but stress that it is the responsibility of parents for the most part and not the sole territory of the schools. What chance do teachers have if the kids see mum and dad stoated, stoned and high as kites?
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Old 26th December 2006, 11:54 PM   #17
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The use of drugs can only hurt your health, and nobody else.

ĄÓjala que fuera cierto!
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Old 27th December 2006, 12:09 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Brian View Post
At the current time, taking illicit drugs is...illicit. Until the laws change, they are...criminal.
What matters most to me is not legislation but the lasting damage many drugs can inflict on people, as well as on their family and friends and on society as a whole. And still, some people seem to feel that taking drugs like ecstacy and cocaine is 'cool'.

The harder we fight drugs, the more expensive they become, which makes it even more lucrative for drugs traders to enter the business. It's a catch-22 really. Personally, I believe more in education in schools.

Drug trafficking currupts entire societies, like in Latin America for instance. The coca leaf itself is a harmless stimulant, just like coffee. It has been used for millennia by the indigenous peoples of the Andean region, and they continue to do so. Quechua and Aymara miners chew the leaves because this helps them to fight cold, hunger and fatigue while they are at work. The coca plant forms an integral part of their culture and coca leaf tea is widely available in countries like Colombia, Bolivia, Ecuador and Peru. A colleague of mine brought back some of this tea from Peru a couple of months ago. The tea is illegal here in Holland even though it's completely harmless. Coca was not a problem in these countries until someone invented cocaine!!!
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Old 27th December 2006, 12:27 AM   #19
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Drug trafficking currupts entire societies, like in Latin America for instance. The coca leaf itself is a harmless stimulant, just like coffee. It has been used for millennia by the indigenous peoples of the Andean region, and they continue to do so. Quechua and Aymara miners chew the leaves because this helps them to fight cold, hunger and fatigue while they are at work. The coca plant forms an integral part of their culture and coca leaf tea is widely available in countries like Colombia, Bolivia, Ecuador and Peru. A colleague of mine brought back some of this tea from Peru a couple of months ago. The tea is illegal here in Holland even though it's completely harmless. Coca was not a problem in these countries until someone invented cocaine!!!
I've been doing a lot of research on the coca plant lately for a research project that I'm doing, and ran across an intriguing article in National Geographic that declared that the drug cartels were forcing campesinos to stop producing normal crops in favor of producing coca base. Amazingly, it has created an economy that uses coca base as currency when funds are tight. Out of flour? No problem! Bring a bag of coca base (which will eventually be worth thousands on the street) and barter it to make your bread.

http://magma.nationalgeographic.com/...ds/media2.html

In my opinion, the real crime is what is happening to these poor farmers.
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Old 27th December 2006, 12:30 AM   #20
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The use of drugs can only hurt your health, and nobody else.
'Only' hurt your health? Isn't your health the most precious thing in the world, apart from your family and friends?

Some people end up using drugs because they think these substances will help them to disconnect from the harsh reality around them, just like alcoholics. In many cases it just appears to be a cry for help.

Some people start using drugs out of sheer boredom. Even so, it may ruin their entire life, or their children's lives (in the case of crack babies, for instance). How can you dismiss that as being irrelevant?

Drug addiction actually creates a string of problems which affects many people, not only the addicts themselves. IMO it is a social and medical issue. You, as a taxpayer, also face the consequences of this problem because it is your money which finances rehabilitation projects, psychiatric treatment, HIV/AIDS medication for addicts, etc. Have you thought about that at all?
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