The solution is not to allow the commercial sale of all drugs, but for critical stakeholders, including policymakers, to engange in an adult discussion exploring what a responsibly regulated market for certain currently illicit drugs might look like, and whether it could more effectively deliver on our shared drug policy goals. Different drugs would require different approaches according to their relative risk and demand, and we must put our experience with alcohol, tobacco and pharmaceutical drug regulation to use.
Dealing with the reality of drug markets through regulation rather than prohibition means that responsible government authorities can reclaim control from organised crime. Issues concerning which products shall be distributed, where, when, how, by whom and to whom, can all be decided be the government rather than cartels and gangsters. While some substances could be sold in stores with an age limit, in the same way tobacco and beer are sold today, other substances could be sold in special state-controlled outlets or pharmacies with limits on the amount and frequency of purchase, in the same way some prescription drugs are regulated today. Some drugs could also be sold for use on special premises, as is the case today with pubs for alcohol or Dutch «coffee shops» for cannabis, whereas others again might only be made available for substitution treatment for the already dependent, in the same way that heroin is regulated in several countries today.