No Joint Custody

Argentine drug laws

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The Argentine Constitution declares that "the private actions of men which in no way offend public order or morality, nor injure a third party, are only reserved to God and are exempted from the authority of judges." This broad privacy clause, the Argentine Supreme Court unanimously ruled in August, means the state may not prosecute people merely for possessing marijuana.

Rejecting the 2006 arrests of five young men caught with a few joints in the city of Rosario, the court declared: "Each individual adult is responsible for making decisions freely about their desired lifestyle without state interference. Private conduct is allowed unless it constitutes a real danger or causes damage to property or the rights of others." Busting pot smokers therefore "invades the sphere of personal liberty that is excluded from the authority of state organs."

The decision came less than a week after a new Mexican law decriminalized possession of small amounts of drugs. Brazil and Ecuador are considering similar policies. Kasia Malinowska-Sempruch, director of the Open Society Institute's Global Drug Policy Program, told The New York Times the Obama administration "has left more space for people in Latin America to do what has been under discussion there for some time now."

The Argentine government, which already supported a more tolerant approach to drug users, is expected to follow through on the Supreme Court's ruling with legislation that removes criminal penalties for private possession of marijuana. "The punishment of drug users," the government's chief of staff told reporters, "was the result of the repressive policies adopted by Richard Nixon in the United States."

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  1. I never thought I’d see the day…

  2. “the private actions of men which in no way offend public order or morality, nor injure a third party, are only reserved to God and are exempted from the authority of judges.”

    Get rid of the references to “morality” and “God” (and maybe broaden “men” to “individuals”) and this statement has my full support for incorporation into our U.S. federal/state laws. It would instantly kill many thousands of laws currently on the books.

    1. We would also need to get rid of the reference to “public order”. If the Constitution allows the state to define public order as it so wishes, this amendment would be all bark and no bite.

  3. My only point is that if you take the Bible straight, as I’m sure many of Reasons readers do, you will see a lot of the Old Testament stuff as absolutely insane. Even some cursory knowledge of Hebrew and doing some mathematics and logic will tell you that you really won’t get the full deal by just doing regular skill english reading for those books. In other words, there’s more to the books of the Bible than most will ever grasp. I’m not concerned that Mr. Crumb will go to hell or anything crazy like that!

  4. My only point is that if you take the Bible straight, as I’m sure many of Reasons readers do, you will see a lot of the Old Testament stuff as absolutely insane. Even some cursory knowledge of Hebrew and doing some mathematics and logic will tell you that you really won’t get the full deal by just doing regular skill english reading for those books. In other words, there’s more to the books of the Bible than most will ever grasp. I’m not concerned that Mr. Crumb will go to hell or anything crazy like that!

  5. My only point is that if you take the Bible straight, as I’m sure many of Reasons readers do, you will see a lot of the Old Testament stuff as absolutely insane. Even some cursory knowledge of Hebrew and doing some mathematics and logic will tell you that you really won’t get the full deal by just doing regular skill english reading for those books. In other words, there’s more to the books of the Bible than most will ever grasp.

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