The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) is beginning the New Year by coordinating the nomination of the Netherlands for a Nobel Prize for its achievements in minimizing drug use in its citizens, while at the same time restricting imprisonment.
With few peers at the international level and despite tremendous pressure from the United States, the Dutch government and its people have proven for more than 30 years that it is more cost effective, humane, and practical to be “smart on drugs” rather than “tough on drugs.”
The following quotes from physician Stephen H. Frye’s book ‘Twenty-five Reasons to Legalize Drugs – We Really Lost This War!’ document the validity and appropriateness of this nomination:
“The drug war, not the drugs, kills people.
This is now a real war. Although it started out as political rhetoric, it’s become a genuinely deadly conflict…It has caused hundreds of thousands of unnecessary deaths and untold misery, especially to our children, teens, women, and minorities. And like all wars, it’s been hugely expensive and wasteful; to date, it has cost more than a trillion dollars. And this is just in the United States; the international devastation is incomprehensible. Furthermore, like many wars, it’s based on lies.
“The few deaths that are caused by the drugs are due to impurities, dosages that are not standardized, and reluctance to call 911 when someone overdoses out of fear of being arrested. Replacing prohibition with sensible health-oriented alternatives, including legalizing currently illicit drugs, can eliminate these drug-related deaths.
“The Dutch should be recognized for their remarkable human rights achievement of regulating and decriminalizing drugs and equally important, offering comprehensive treatment to its affected citizens. The number of lives they have saved, as well as assaults, robberies, rapes, child abuse, and other prohibition-related criminal activities that they’ve prevented, is a major humanitarian and public health accomplishment. Their success in minimizing the catastrophic effects of the War on Drugs cannot be overstated. For example, the U.S. has six times as many people in prisons as the Netherlands per capita, and still we have four times their murder rate. Compared to ours, the Dutch prison population is negligible and they actually provide education and rehabilitation for their inmates. Furthermore, their incidence of AIDS and hepatitis is a fraction of ours.
“Taken together, these groundbreaking medical, human rights and humanitarian accomplishments are of unprecedented magnitude. They not only serve as an inspiration to the rest of the world, they also demand emulation. Because of this, it is recommended that Louk Hulsman, Professor Emeritus of Criminal Law at the University of Rotterdam, who was originally responsible for crafting the forward-thinking drug policy in the Netherlands and the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports, who administer their very successful current drug policies, be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.”
The world owes a great debt of gratitude to them, along with many thousands of activists, academics, and religious and business leaders, for demonstrating that a scientifically-crafted harm reduction drug policy based on researched public health models, not an unyielding prohibition, prison oriented model, results in a healthier, safer, and less imprisoned population—that also uses fewer drugs.
The deadline for submission is February 1, 2009, and according to the Nobel Prize webpage, people from every country can nominate, but it is limited to members of national assemblies, governments, and international courts of law; university chancellors, professors of social science, history, philosophy, law and theology; leaders of peace research institutes and institutes of foreign affairs; Nobel Peace Prize Laureates of previous years; board members of organizations that have received the Nobel Peace Prize; present and past members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee; and former advisors of the Nobel Institute.
–Nobel Nomination Process Information–
All that is necessary is for a qualified nominator, as listed above, to send a letter to Geir Lundestad, Ph.D., Director, Norwegian Nobel Institute, Henrik Ibsens gate 51, NO-0255, Oslo, Norway, indicating the names of those nominated and the reason for the nomination, and it must be received by February 1, 2009.
The Dutch have shown us the path to peace and now is the time to recognize their achievement.
While NORML is a cannabis-only reform organization, by nominating and educating the world about the success of the Netherlands’s drug policy, we are committed to using this public campaign as the first high impact project for worldwide drug policy reform in this New Year. This e-mail is being sent to U.S. and international drug policy organizations, seeking the names and contacts of qualified Nobel Prize nominators. The email is also being sent to organizations for children, teens, women, minorities, and the environment, as all these people and the environment are severely harmed and actually killed by the drug war.
It is time to stimulate this crucially important worldwide conversation, and this is a project all drug policy reform and civic-minded groups, regardless of their mission statements, can support. The webpage and other promotional campaigns in support of this nomination have been launched, but gathering qualified nominators needs to be the first step as there is a short deadline. Please ask nominators to send their letters directly to the Nobel Institute, and also notify NORML at firstname.lastname@example.org as we are coordinating and tracking this campaign.
Also, please feel free to forward this email notice to all relevant organizations and anyone you feel can assist this ‘Netherlands For Nobel’ movement—especially qualified Nobel Peace Prize nominators.
It is truly time to end the drug war and start the peace process.
Thank you in advance and best wishes for an exciting 2009 pursuing the Nobel Peace Prize for this most noble cause.