Economics and human rights

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Andrei Sokolov

Economics and human rights

Economics, politics, laws, sociology, human rights, psychology, futurology, philosophy, ethics

Short translation into English

(The abridged version, without most tables, graphs, illustrations, quotes, examples, statistics, evidence.)

In advance, I ask the reader to forgive me for my English and the quality of the author’s translation

Full text version available in Russian

2017 in russian

2018 in English

From the author

The purpose of this book is to show the way of combining economic benefits for the state with observance of human rights.

Show that the state is getting richer when the rights of the inhabitants of this state are fully respected, the rights of all people on earth are fully respected.

Prove that respect for human rights makes people happier, and the country and their inhabitants are richer.

If this book brings the moment when economists and politicians will begin to consider the point of reference of human rights and human benefits, and not the blessings of states and peoples, then the author will be happy.

I hope this book will make the world better. At least a little better and more humane.


We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

United States Declaration of Independence

On December 10, 1948, the UN adopted the Declaration of Human Rights. It sets out the principles that all nations and countries must follow. In this document there are only 30 articles that describe the basic and immutable human rights. For example, the right to life, health, work, rest and so on. (156)

Since then more than 60 years have passed. Do you think how many countries in the world fully comply with the provisions of this Declaration? In which country in the world are human rights enunciated by the United Nations fully respected? Not in one!

No country in the world has implemented the provisions of the Declaration of Human Rights in full in its practice, in its laws, in the lives of its citizens.

In no country of the world human rights are fully observed.

In this book you will find evidence of this.

From the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 2.

Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.

Article 18.

Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.

Article 19.

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Do citizens, residents of all these countries, benefit from this? Of course not.

Perhaps it is advantageous for the state economy not to respect human rights? Also no. And it’s easy to prove.

Can the budget benefit from the infringement of human rights? Can the budgets of countries where human rights are observed less richer than the budgets of countries where human rights are greater, where they are guaranteed and protected by the state? Also no. And this will also be proved.

Can the police, the army, officials, teachers, doctors, patients, pupils be better off from inferior respect for human rights? Can the infringement of rights promote the construction of good roads, improve the quality of education, medical care? No. And this is also quite simple to prove.

The purpose of this book is to prove that everyone is benefiting from respect for human rights: the state and citizens, hospitals and schools, business and tax services, doctors and patients, teachers and students, students, police officers and even officials.

The only one who benefits from violation of human rights — bandits, criminals and associated statesmen and pseudo-businessmen.

In this book you will find evidence that the observance of human rights leads to an increase in citizens ‘incomes, to citizens’ freedom, to the safety of residents, to an increase in budget revenues, and thus to better living conditions for all law-abiding citizens of the country.

The book examines the basic concepts of human rights and their relationship with the economy and state revenues. On specific examples, it examines whether states observe human rights and what benefits the state budget can receive if it fully respects human rights.

We will consider the question of observing human rights mainly on the example of the developed democracies of the First World, since we will not examine such obvious violations of rights as torture, but less noticeable, but no less fundamental.

Another reason for this sample is high-quality and reliable statistics.

And, of course, the main reason why the book talks about developed democracies is that it is necessary to understand where such democracies move further. After all, any stop is a step back.

Violations of human rights in the undemocratic states of the “second” and “third” world are obvious and do not require books, but specific actions.

In this book, we will examine less obvious violations that hamper the growth of the economies of countries.

The author does not pretend to “know the answer what to do.” The book is an invitation to a discussion, a philosophical question.

In 1946 Ludwig von Mises wrote that economic science should not be left to the training classes and offices of statisticians and should not remain in esoteric circles. It is the philosophy of human life and activity and concerns everyone, the energy of civilization and human existence. (146)

As arguments in this book, basically two approaches are used. The first is logical reasoning, accepted both in philosophical literature and in the writings of well-known economists, for example, Milton Friedman or Friedrich von Hayek, Nobel Prize winners in economics. Their works “Capitalism and Freedom”, “Freedom to choose”, “Road to slavery” are not only quoted in this book, but partly are the cause of its occurrence.

The second is the “diagnosis” of ex juvantibus. This method is common in medicine. Its essence is that when a certain disease is supposed that can not be laboratory confirmed, treatment is appointed “blindly” and if it helped, then the diagnosis is confirmed. To do this, this book provides examples of countries that have carried out certain experiments, allowed or prohibited drugs, weapons, immigration, prostitution, etc. And the results of these actions.

In addition to medicine, this method of proof is also used in physics, when a series of experiments confirms a certain theory.

All figures and data in this book can be verified using the references given at the end of the book.

In the case of Internet data, it is not possible to indicate the year of publication or the page, so the link in the form of a URL looks logical, especially since this book is not a thesis. Its task is for the reader to think about these issues. I looked at them from an unusual and unconventional point of view, becoming an arbitration judge between the arguments for and against, based on the Declaration of Human Rights.

All countries and all people are different. But if from time to time, from country to country, from state to state, a certain same action leads to the same result, then the original assumption is true. And since from the country to the country the result of the identical action causes identical consequences, it suggests that similar actions in another country will lead to similar results. In other words, if in several countries 2 +2 = 4, then most likely in all other countries 2 +2 will also be equal to four.

Those. if in Portugal the experiment with decriminalization of drugs led to a decrease in “first-time users”, a decrease in HIV-infected people, then the “medicine” of decriminalization is the right way. Similarly, with prostitution, for example, in Germany or the Netherlands. Or with weapons in Estonia, Lithuania, Switzerland, the Czech Republic or the United States.

Those. This is not a “mathematical” method of proof, but an “experimental” one. As already mentioned, this method is used both in physics and in medicine.

This way of evidence works well in the chapters on weapons, drugs, prostitution.

In the chapters on taxes or immigration, unfortunately, there is much less experimental data. But there is something. Including, opinion of authorities.

There are quite a lot of economic, mental, behavioral myths in the “head” of the state and in the head of an ordinary person, to understand with which the purpose of this book.

We will look at all questions from the point of view of the economic benefits of the budget and the state’s ensuring of human rights recorded in the World Declaration. After all, it’s your rights, dear reader. This is your freedom, your security, your education, your health, your pension, social benefits, your right to work and a good job, your right to rest, your right to self-defense. This is your life. And its quality.

From the last point and start.

Article 3. From the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

“Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.”

Weapons… or… The right to life and health

When you walk down the street in the evening and see a noisy or even aggressive company, and maybe a flashing shadow, or maybe hurried steps behind… Do you feel safe?

Is there a knife, a can, a whistle in your purse or pocket? Is the mount or hatchet under the car seat? Did you attend training or self-defense courses? And maybe they were engaged in boxing or karate? Are you worried about your daughter or your wife when they go somewhere without you? Are you sure that you can repulse the criminal if he wants to rob you, kill, rape you?

How will you be able to protect your life and health, your property, if you come across a strong, and even more armed, criminal, bandit, hooligan? And your wife, daughter, mother?

Are their lives and health protected in your country?

Do you want your daughter to protect her life and health when she meets a robber, a murderer, a rapist?

How would she do it if she did not have a gun, and a meeting with the criminal took place?

Politicians say this — we have police… she will come, investigate, catch and punish the criminal…

They forget to add “maybe”, they forget to insert “if” before the word “catch”. Thus, “the police, perhaps, will catch the criminal if he can find him.”

But to you, already robbed, raped or killed, it will be almost all the same. You have already suffered. You were no longer protected. Your rights to health, life, inviolability of property are already broken. And the state did not protect you. For your taxes.

Why does the perpetrator choose to sacrifice you, and not a policeman or a military man?

It’s very simple — they have weapons, and you do not. You are weaker, defenseless, it is much easier for you to take away everything a criminal wants.

In principle, the ban on weapons for civilians is nothing but discrimination. There is a group of people “military” — they can. There is a group of people “civil” — they can not. This is segregation in the spirit of “a place only for whites.” However, for whom is the risk higher for home robbery or in a dark lane? For a strong man from the police or for a girl or an old woman? Which of them, out of work, is really more important to have weapons in the house or in the purse?

From the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 3.

Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.

Article 7.

All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination.

Article 17.

(1) Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.

(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.

What should the state do to ensure you the right to life, health, the right to preserve your property?

Only to legalize the human right to self-defense, and hence the right to purchase and carry weapons.

A law-abiding citizen needs a law to ensure his right to life and health. The law that will allow you to acquire and carry weapons of self-defense, including a gun.

A criminal does not need such a law. He is a criminal and he already walks with a gun. And it is advantageous for him that a law-abiding citizen does not have a pistol. And while there is no law on the right to purchase and carry weapons in the country, the state defends the interests of the bandit, and not the right to life and health of a law-abiding taxpayer.

We must also remember that historically, weapons were forbidden to slaves and people who were slaves — Japanese and Chinese peasants.

Thus. The ban on carrying weapons equates citizens and residents to slaves.

And Article 4 of the Declaration of Human Rights prohibits slavery: “No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery… are prohibited in all forms.”

Another aspect of the citizens’ right to arms is whether the state is afraid of its citizens.

The US is not afraid of its armed citizens — weapons are allowed and people even have the right to have an armed uprising authorized by law!

There is a beautiful story on this subject. Perhaps a true, perhaps anecdote, but it reflects well the essence of respect for the human right to life.

A story from a traffic policeman from Minnesota:

“One day, I stopped an elderly lady for speeding on track 210, at 197 miles, just east of McGregor, Minnesota.

I asked to present the rights, registration and insurance. The lady gave me the documents.

I was somewhat surprised (considering her considerable age), having found out among the documents a license for concealed carrying of weapons, and asked if she was armed at the moment.

The lady replied that yes, she had a 45-gauge pistol in the glove box.

Something made me ask, but does she have any weapons other than the one mentioned. She said that yes, she has 9mm Glock in the center console. Then I asked “Is this all?”. No, she said, there is still 38 caliber in her purse. Then I asked what she was so afraid of.

The lady stared at me and said: “I’m not afraid of shit.”

The right to arms is not only among US citizens. Below, you will see examples of how the legalization of weapons has affected the level of crime, and thus to ensure the right to life of people and save budget funds for the investigation of crimes. But these are significant amounts that could be spent with greater benefit to residents. For example, for round-the-clock coverage of roads, yards, streets. And criminals would have been harder, and an accident would have been less. For the same money. Thanks to a short line in the law: “Citizens have the right to freely acquire, store and carry firearms for the purpose of self-defense.”

By the way, defense spending would also have decreased, and tax revenues have grown, new businesses for the sale of weapons, safes for its storage, workshops, shooting galleries, training courses, etc. would have appeared. As for the defense… Who in the “sober mind” will try to fight with the country where every bush, every window can shoot? Thus, such a law is a deterrent force, like nuclear weapons. Only power is not costly, like an army or an atomic bomb, but a profitable, developing economy and replenishing the budget. This, perhaps, would have allowed even to reduce the cost of the army.

Taking into account all these arguments, the legislation of more than 20 countries of the world allows its citizens not only possession, but also wearing short-barreled weapons.

The right to bear and own weapons is an instrument for protecting life and health. The economic effect, the impact on the country’s budget, the impact on the criminal situation in the country arises from the fact that the number of crimes is reduced, that means the amount of budget expenditures for their investigation, search and capture of the criminal, court, prison, supervision, etc. is reduced. In this regard, an example of Estonia is illustrative, where the police budget after the legalization of arms was halved.

Just as vaccinations, if they are in many, protect from diseases those few who could not plant, as well as the presence of weapons in many, i.e. free arms sales protect those who do not have weapons. For the bandit does not know if a man is armed, since the right to arms is. And if he does not know, he will be careful to attack or rob.

Opponents of the presence of weapons from the public should remember that the police will come at the signal of robbery, rape, murder only when the crime has already been committed. And the man has already suffered. But the main task of the police, and the authorities in general, to prevent crime. The law on the free carrying of weapons is just such a preventive measure. A ban on weapons on the contrary prohibits citizens from protecting their lives and health.

Opponents of the legalization of weapons argue that they delegate the protection of their police rights. This argument does not stand up to criticism, not only because the police come after the crime, i.e. does not protect, but also because delegation does not mean a ban on independent actions. We delegate to doctors the right to take care of our health. But it does not forbid us to play sports or lead a healthy lifestyle. Delegating doctors the right to health protection does not lead to a ban on drug sales in pharmacies. Including without a prescription. But the delegation of the police right to protect life for some reason leads to a ban on legal weapons.

If weapons are prohibited that can save lives, then it is logical to prohibit condoms, bandages, plasters, harnesses, car first-aid kits and in general the provision of pre-medical care. They too can save a life. If you reach the limit of absurdity, then pharmacies should be banned — you can also poison yourself with, for example, salicylates, and excessive use of analgin or paracetamol leads to very deplorable consequences.

If the weapon is dangerous and can cause harm, and therefore it is forbidden, then the sale of knives, axes, chainsaws, cars and even bricks and ropes must also be banned. All this can turn into a weapon, harm life and health. All these things are dangerous.

However, only weapons are prohibited. Is it reasonable?

Here are a few examples. They are very modern and very similar in fact. But not by the result. In one case, a resident, a citizen was armed, the carrying of weapons was legalized. Two other results of the ban on the legal carrying of weapons, the ban on protection of life and health, the ban on the basic human right, was the defenselessness of citizens to the perpetrator and the huge number of victims.

If to speak from the point of view of economy — the country lost taxpayers who died in these incidents.

Jerusalem, Israel 01/08/2017

On this day in the center of Jerusalem, a truck, driven by a terrorist, entered a military group. Four died, another 15 people were injured. But the criminal was not stopped by a policeman, not a soldier, but by an ordinary civilian. But armed. Guide. Eitan Ron. This was reported by the Israeli Channel 9: “According to a 30-year-old guide, he was moving away from the military when a truck crashed into it. Ron was hurt and he flew to the side. “Fortunately, I had a gun, I fired a shot at the wheels, I realized that it was not enough, I ran and released all the clips on the cab.” The terrorist continued to go, when I shot the whole store, I realized that he was continuing to go to this the soldiers pulled up and opened fire, after 20 seconds he stopped, we called for help, there were wounded soldiers whom he moved twice.The shooting lasted less than a minute and the only question that should be asked is why the only 30-year-old civilian neutralizes the terrorist, while there were dozens of armed military men who fled “… The published video of the attack confirms the words of Ron — most of the military rushed to run in the opposite direction from the truck immediately after the attack, and did not try to eliminate the driver.” (Israel, Channel 9)

Nice, France, July 15, 2016

Here everything was different. The weapon was only with the police, and a truck with a terrorist on the night of July 15, 2016 crashed into the crowd on the embankment in Nice, where the celebration of the Day of the Bastille took place. 86 people were killed.

The criminal was shot by the police only after he crushed 86 people. All of them were without firearms.

Berlin, Germany, December 19, 2016

“In the evening, a truck crashed into a crowd of passers-by in the Bright Square in Berlin, where a Christmas fair was organized… Rescuers found several dead and about 50 wounded.” All of them were unarmed.

Total. If the state respects the human right to life and health, with the legalization of carrying weapons in Israel, the number of dead 4 people + a criminal. In case of non-observance of human rights, 86 people were killed in the ban on carrying weapons in France. In Germany — less, but only thanks to the truck’s computer and the heroism of the Polish driver, who died at the hands of the terrorist. Perhaps if the driver had the right to carry weapons, he would not have died. After all, the criminal had weapons. And the driver does not.

To date, the world has accumulated a lot of statistics and experience of permits and prohibitions on possession and carrying of weapons. Let’s look at this experience.


In 1996, the Australian Government banned the possession of many types of firearms, after which the number of armed robberies increased by 59% within eight years. (7)


“The law permits the storage and carrying of firearms, including rifles. After permission to carry and store civilian rifled weapons, a significant decline in serious crimes was recorded.”(8)


Since 25 years, a Brazilian can have a firearm for self-defense. The permission to acquire weapons is given by the Federal Police. (6)

However, wearing is allowed only to residents of rural areas of the country (about 20% of the population), if necessary. And crime is concentrated in cities where residents are unarmed in front of bandits. The result is high street crime.

United Kingdom

Since January 1997, the British government has banned citizens from possession of firearms. And this immediately led to an 88% increase in violent crimes (101% for armed robberies, 105% for rapes, 24% for murders). (7) In the United States, where the right to arms is protected by the constitution, the number of similar crimes in the same year was half that in Britain.

53% of English robberies occur when someone is at home. In America, the robbers admit that they are afraid of armed homeowners more than the police. As a result, the number of domestic robberies in the US in the presence of the owners is 13%. Almost 5 times less.

It would be correct to compare the number of robberies per 100,000 inhabitants, and not as a percentage, but as will be shown later, this does not matter much in this case. The tendency to reduce crime while increasing the legal arsenal of weapons for law-abiding citizens is steadily observed in all countries. As well as the growth of crime in the ban on weapons.

The United Nations report in 2002 placed England and Wales at the top of the crime tables among the 18 developed countries, recognizing the UK as less secure.

Five years after the ban on firearms, crime with its use has doubled. As expected, the ban on legal weapons led to the fact that it was owned only by criminals. (9)


After the legislative permission for storage and carrying of fire-arms, a significant decline in serious crimes was recorded. (8)


Citizens of Germany own 10 million units of legal weapons. The increase in the number of legal “trunks” led to a reduction in crimes related to the use of weapons by 60%. (10)


In Israel, any citizen who has reached the age of 27 or has served in the army can buy and own weapons. Firearms can be carried by drivers of public transport and taxis, jewelers, former employees of power structures and other people who need it for personal protection. At the same time, citizens can keep no more than 50 bullets at home.

According to “Rosbalt” in Israel on the streets you can see a huge number of armed people, both in uniform and in civilian clothes. “The laws of Israel allow citizens to have, wear and use short-barreled weapons for self-defense, but in addition to fans of” short-barreled “in the streets one can see young men and girls with automatic army weapons. At the same time the machines are equipped with refilled magazines and are ready for use at any time. The right to carry a pistol or revolver has: taxi drivers, diamond exchange workers, sportsmen involved in shooting, and all residents of the country who live in the occupied territories. In addition, every citizen, after serving an emergency, may ask the command to sign a special petition, which gives grounds for obtaining a license. And, finally, the police issues a license to the weapons to all the volunteers who voluntarily patrol residential areas. In addition, the police and private security guards are armed in the country, and very young girls armed with army pistols often appear among the guards.”

“However, the high density of armament of the population does not lead to an increase in the number of accidents, or to a high level of illegal use of these weapons, than usually scare the philistine… officials.”

On the contrary, the recent history of Israel is filled with examples where the presence of weapons from law-abiding citizens helped them and others save their lives and health.

There is a case when, in the attack of a Bedouin gang on the family of an Israeli farmer, the farmer shot all the attackers. Savior and his life, and relatives. And then the police came… to the corpses of bandits, and not to the corpses of law-abiding taxpayers.

Often, criminals in Israel are “stopped” by random passers-by. A terrorist can shoot a soldier who is on vacation or is completely civilian, passing a criminal in a car.

This directly saves budgetary funds.

As an example, you can look at Russia, where weapons are prohibited, the number of policemen per capita is 976 employees per 100 000 population. In fact every hundredth resident is a policeman! This is how much money is needed from the budget for their “feeding”? And these are healthy men who do not produce anything. Neither build, nor sow, nor plow. Zero economic efficiency! More precisely — negative, because the level of crime exists somehow apart from them. (5)

In Israel there are 330 police officers per 100,000 population, i.е. three times less. The number of criminal deaths in Russia is 28.2 per 100 000 people.

In Israel, this ratio is 2.1 per 100 000 people. In a continually warring country! With constant terrorist attacks!

Those. In Israel, the probability of dying at the hands of a criminal is 14 times lower than in Russia.

The result of a reasonable law on weapons and a small number of police was the high salary of an Israeli policeman.


In 1974, Ireland banned and confiscated a large number of small arms from the population, resulting in a five-fold increase in the number of murders. (7)


The weapon for the population is legalized. Justice Minister Roberto Castelli said that from now on, “criminals will have more to fear, and the victims of aggression will have fewer problems,” and in 2006 the Italian parliament approved a law that allows citizens to use legally registered weapons to protect their lives and property. (eleven)


In Yemen, citizens from 18 years of age are allowed to own any kind of weapons. The license is only needed for carrying weapons, if there are sufficient grounds (work, position in society, etc.).


In Canada, weapons were previously sold freely. And after imposing severe restrictions and even seizing weapons from citizens, crime immediately increased by 45%. (12)


The law permits the storage and carrying of firearms, including rifled weapons. The result of this law is a significant reduction in the number of serious crimes. (8)


The law permits the storage and carrying of firearms, including rifled weapons. After allowing the carrying and storage of civilian rifles, a significant decline in serious crimes was recorded. (8)


Art. 10 of the Mexican Constitution gives the right to citizens of the country to have weapons for their own defense and to protect their property. In 2004, in addition to the Constitution, a law was passed that allowed Mexicans to keep at home no more than two pistols in caliber to 3.8 mm, and also to carry these weapons outside the house, including in public places. (13)


After the citizens in Moldova were allowed to have pistols and revolvers, the crime rate almost halved. (12)

As of 2003, Moldovan citizens have 6000 firearms on their hands. Every year more than 800 pistols and revolvers are purchased. With each purchase, of course, the tax is paid. (14)


Residents of Norway can acquire virtually any weapon. More than a third of the country’s inhabitants are armed. To purchase weapons you need to get a license and justify the need to purchase. After that, a biographical check and training at the qualification courses are conducted.

However, concealed or free carrying of weapons is prohibited. And as a result — Breivik’s crime. Citizens did not have weapons, but the criminal had.


In Russia, in the hands of people, there are more than five million hunting rifles. In percent this is very small. 3—4%. The percentage of criminal use of legal gunshot hunting weapons is a percentage share. (15)

At one of the briefings, the Central Internal Affairs Directorate of St. Petersburg informed that there are only 2 cases of illegal use of them per year for 16 thousand legal hunting trunks. (12) In total, in Russia, legal weapons are used in crimes against the individual about 5—10 times a year.

In tsarist Russia, weapons were sold freely. The Nagan or the Browning cost 16—20 rubles — half of the average worker’s salary.

In the USSR, weapons were banned, and the total ban on weapons left in Russia since the days of the Soviet government does not lead to a decrease, but to an increase in crime. The criminal world is actively arming.

According to official data of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia. As of December 1, 2004, 178,344 pieces of firearms and military equipment were stolen by criminals (or somehow “lost”) by the country’s law enforcement agencies, including 66,679 pieces of rifled weapons, of which 23,451 assault rifles, 25,916 pistols, 1,927 machine guns, 2,661 grenade launchers and 71 portable missile launchers. Of course, these weapons are now for criminals, and not for law-abiding citizens. (16, 17)

The state, complicating the legal circulation of weapons, facilitates the actions of bandits. Only 13% of the victims are resisting the attackers and only half the time successfully. (8)


Thanks to the 2nd Amendment of the Constitution, which guarantees every citizen the right to own and bear arms, US citizens are fully able to protect their lives and health. Approximately 43% of American households have firearms. This is about 90 million armed citizens. They say that “Abraham Lincoln gave people freedom, and Colonel Colt called their chances.”

Specific conditions are regulated at the regional level. For example, in California, you can buy no more than one barrel in 30 days. In 30 states, weapons can be worn openly, in 14 it requires prior authorization, and only in 6 states it is forbidden to openly carry firearms. The concealed carrying of weapons is permitted in all states except Illinois.

Of course, the media is constantly showing data about shooting in the US. One of the reasons for this is that most of these media are also American or broadcast news from the US. For the US press generally watches very closely, where more closely than the news from Colombia, for example. On the other hand, the USA objectively produces a large percentage of world news. Much larger than, for example, the countries of Africa or South America. However, if you count the number of weapons in the hands of people, the number of inhabitants and the percentage of criminal use of weapons, you will get a completely different picture.

Professor David Mastard published in the Journal of Law and Economics the results of a study according to which in states where citizens are allowed to carry weapons, the number of police murders is reduced by two percent every year. (7)

According to the University of Chicago, in states where concealed weapons are allowed, the total crime rate is less than in the “forbidding” states, by 22%, the level of murders — by 33%, robberies — by 37%, grievous bodily harms — by 14%. (15)

In those states of America where secretly carrying weapons are allowed, citizens kill twice as many criminals as policemen. Thus, it can be stated that if citizens did not have weapons, it was for them, and not for criminals, that this part of the criminal meetings would end with death or other losses.

In those states of America where citizens are allowed to covertly carry weapons, the overall level of violent crime is lower by 18% than in Illinois, where wearing is prohibited.

In Illinois, where weapons are prohibited, 289.7 murders per 100 000 population are committed. In states where concealed weapons are allowed, 183.1 killings per 100 000 population.

In the state of Florida after 1987, after permission to purchase weapons, crime fell by 21%.

In Washington, the capital of the United States, in 1976, the authorities banned the possession of pistols and revolvers. As a result, crime has tripled.

From 1973 to 1992, the number of “trunks” of US citizens increased by 73% — from 122 to 222 million units! The number of murders during the same years decreased by 10%.

The most stringent laws concerning the possession and carrying of weapons exist in the cities of New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Washington. In these cities, only 5% of the US population live together. But it is in these cities, where it is more difficult for citizens to protect themselves, 15% of all murders in the country are committed. (12)

The Town Hall of the small town of Kennesaw, Georgia, in 1983, required residents to have at least one unit of firearms per house. For 16 years of application of this act in the city there were only three murders, two of which with the help of a knife (1984 and 1987). And then, despite the fact that the population of the town for fourteen years has grown 4 times!

The total number of crimes against the person in Kennesaw within a year after the adoption of the law was reduced by 74%, and a year later by another 45%. That is, only one realization that any person in the city can be armed, led to a significant reduction in crime.

The example of Kennesaw proves that the presence of firearms among citizens increases the level of public order and security. And reduces, accordingly, the cost of security, reduces the burden on the budget and the police.

The second amendment to the US Constitution reads: “… the right of people to store and carry weapons should not be infringed.” This right is used by 7 out of 10 adult Americans.

In the hands of a criminal, weapons are evil. In the hands of the criminal and the scalpel is evil. In the hands of the doctor, the same scalpel is good. The ax in the hands of the forester is good. In the hands of the criminal is evil. The knife in the hands of the cook is good, in the hands of the bandit is evil.

The population of the USA more than twice exceeds the population of Russia. In the US, weapons are allowed. In Russia it is forbidden. At the same time, according to data for 1993, there were 23 thousand murders in the United States, in Russia — 29 thousand. Those. in terms of the percentage of the population, in a country where weapons are prohibited to citizens, they kill twice as much as in the country where the weapon is legalized. Even policemen in the United States, despite a huge number of weapons from residents, are killed half as often as in Russia.

In the US, according to data for 2016, with all the abundance of weapons in the hands of people, the number of murders was less than 5 per 100,000 a year. In Russia, despite the ban, this indicator is almost twice as high — more than 9 people per 100 000 population. (132)

Official statistics of developed countries constantly notes the increase in the level of murders, with the toughening of the right to carry and store weapons. (8)

Observations confirm the rule. From country to country, from example to example, the same picture repeats itself almost mathematically. There are more weapons among citizens — there are fewer crimes and murders.

Why, when speaking about the right of citizens to life and health, and the connection of this right with the economy, it is necessary to remember criminal statistics? Not only because this is the main argument of opponents of free possession of weapons, but also because the right to life and health of one person is limited by the right to life and health of another person. And, as can be seen from the examples given, the total number of saved lives and health with free possession of weapons is greater than with prohibitions on weapons. From figure to figure, from country to country, from state to state.

As for the economy, then it’s even simpler. The more weapons sold legally, the more taxes paid, the more jobs created, the more taxpayers saved their lives and health.

If the US sold 150 million weapons, and in Russia only 5 million, how much more taxes went to the treasury of the United States? And how much more shops, shooting galleries, repair shops, shooting clubs opened? How much more jobs did you have? How much more people were able to get a job and legally improve their financial situation?

It is also important to note the fact that the total number of crimes involving weapons constitutes a rather small percentage of all deaths caused not by illness or by age. Much smaller than the volume of battles over the ban on possession of weapons.

So in 2001 in the United States in an accident killed 42,900 people. But cars are not banned.

From poisoning killed 14,500 people, and from a fall from a height of 14,200, which did not lead to a ban on the construction of skyscrapers.

From accidents due to strangulation (choked with food, etc.), 4200 died, but this did not entail the general closure of restaurants and cafes.

From fire and other sources of fire and smoke, 3900 people died, but matches and lighters can still be bought in any supermarket.

From the firearms for the same period of time, 800 people died. This is only 1% (one percent!) Of deaths from the above set of causes. (18)

As Stephen Levitt writes — Given the number of pistols in the hands of the US population and the annual number of murders, the probability of using a single pistol to commit a murder is one to ten thousand. The risk of losing your life by drowning in the pool is higher than the risk of dying from a bullet. (136)

If we summarize the data of the FBI, police and scientists, it turns out that increasing the number of weapons in the hands of the population leads to a reduction in the number of its use. Not even murders or injuries. Just “shoot less.”

At the same time, the number of murders also decreases. On average, by 8% per year, rape by 5%, robbery by 7%.

Owners of firearms are much less likely to be victims of robbers. In this case, the use of firearms as a means of self-defense rarely ends in blood. Only in 1% of cases the offender is wounded and in the tenth of a percent of cases — he is killed. That is enough of a threat and a shot in the air to prevent a crime in 99% of cases before the appearance of the police.

It was also noted that if the law allows only to keep weapons at home, then street crime sharply increases, especially with regard to pensioners and young women. But as soon as the law allows not only the storage, but also the carrying of weapons — street crime is sharply reduced. (18)

So the laws of Oklahoma, which allowed homeowners to use force no matter how small the threat, reduced the number of robberies by almost half. (9) It is important to note that the number of robberies fell not from the increase in pistols in homes, but only from permission to shoot at the slightest threat to property or health. It is entirely permissible to assume that politeness in Oklahoma has also increased, and the number of abuse and threats has decreased.

In 2007, 5% of the world’s population lived in the United States. And these people owned half of all weapons on Earth. (3, 19) At the same time, two-thirds of the firearms in the US are in the hands of civilians. The police and the army are in a clear minority — one third.

If you follow the logic of the opponents of weapons for citizens, then such a “powder” barrel should have exploded long ago. But this does not happen. And as shown above, only according to official statistics, the US is safer for the inhabitants of the country than, for example, Russia in two to four times. Accent. If you compare the official statistics.

When it comes to the right to life of an individual, the right to own weapons for self-defense is obviously immutable. And the big figures prove that this is not only logical, but also safe and economically justified.

In the United States, approximately 100,000 firearms are registered each year for self-defense. Those. 100,000 times the right to arms helped to prevent crime. 100 thousand crimes against the life, health and property of taxpayers were prevented before the arrival of the police. This, of course, led to budget savings, as the police did not have to investigate 100,000 murders, robberies and rapes. This led to the receipt of taxes on the sale and maintenance of 100 thousand weapons and ammunition to them. This led to a decrease in the total number of crimes in the last decade of the last century by 30—40%.

Thus, the right to life and health of taxpayers is now more secure than, for example, in the 80th year. (3, 20)

According to the FBI, the death of the criminal ended in 2005—2010, only 213 crimes per year. Those. To scare off a gun is not at all what to wound or kill. Scared off 100 thousand times. Only 213 were killed. (21)

Czech Republic

The Czech Republic, along with Switzerland and Estonia, is one of the most armed countries in Europe, if counted by the number of “trunks” in the population. In the Czech Republic you can not only buy weapons, without explaining the reason for the purchase, but also covertly to wear. Not by chance, therefore, the Czech Republic is one of the safest European countries.

In addition to reducing the level of crime, the right to arms in the Czech Republic led to the development of an entire industry. And today, shooting is almost as popular as football or hockey. This is not so widely known fact, but more important is another. Hardly an unbiased reader, it is unlikely that a critic of the right to bear arms will be able to recall at least one instance of the use of weapons in this country, which led to the tragedy. After all, tragedies, such as shootings in US schools or Breivik’s crime, are led by opponents of weapons as the main argument for the ban.

The logic of this argument is “limp on both legs”. It is rare when people and the media discuss fatalities, but always very loudly — air crashes. At the same time on roads, in road accidents many more people die than in plane crashes.

In 2014, the Czech Republic committed 426 crimes involving the use of firearms, including gas and signal pistols. During the same period in the Czech Republic there were 2,105 car accidents with human injuries.

According to the Minister of the Interior of the Czech Republic, Milan Hovanets, weapons in the hands of citizens will help in the fight against terrorism. He believes that Czech citizens should have the right, with weapons in their hands, to protect “life, health and property”. In his opinion, “active and rapid defense” could reduce the chances of attackers, firearms in the hands of citizens would help “ensure the internal order, security and territorial integrity” of the Czech Republic. (22)


Switzerland is one of the quietest and safest countries in Europe… and the most armed.

Upon dismissal from the army, the Swiss take their weapons (M-57 rifle and 24 sets of cartridges or SIG SG-550 rifle and 50 rounds) to their homes. True, pensioners are required to hand over the M-57, instead of which they receive a pump gun.

The possession of weapons is not only permitted, but also encouraged. With a population of only 6 million people, in private possession there are 2 million (according to other sources up to 3 million) “trunks”. Of these, 600,000 automatic rifles and 500,000 pistols.

The government sponsors training in the handling of weapons, holding rifle competitions, and promoting the possession of weapons among women. Army units arrange sales of surplus weapons, which are bought by civilians. The proceeds raise the budget, and the right to freely carry weapons makes the country safe. (23)


Sweden, like Switzerland, refers to countries with a high percentage of the population owning firearms. Swedes are allowed to have up to 6 hunting rifles, or up to 10 pistols, or up to 8 units of mixed weapons (rifles + pistols). However, free wearing is prohibited.


Since 2001, in Estonia, citizens from the age of 21 can purchase, store and carry firearms (hidden and discharged). Owners of more than eight units are required to equip a special depot with alarm. Collectors can own army weapons. (24) On hands of one and a half million inhabitants of this country there are 120 thousand trunks.

After the legalization of the pistols, street crime decreased by 80%, which allowed halving the police force. (10) The number of murders after the legalization of weapons decreased by five times! (25)


After the total ban on the possession of any small arms in Jamaica in 1974, the number of murders increased from 11.5 per 100,000 in 1973 to 41.7 in 1980. (7)

Perhaps the authorities of Jamaica operated with typical arguments of opponents of weapons: “The weapons will not help you!”; “You will not have time to apply it!”; “You can not shoot a man!”

These arguments are unconvincing and do not have any evidence. It’s not for an official and a deputy to decide what a person will help, but what does not. What he will have time to do and what not. What can he do in a critical situation. Full-time citizens can quite solve these problems without the intervention of lawmakers.

As it was shown above, crime is reduced only due to the theoretical possibility that a potential victim (law-abiding taxpayer) can have a weapon. Thus, health, property and the right to human life are protected not so much by the “trunk”, but by the legal right to have it and to wear it.

“In the overwhelming majority of cases, the criminal, this is not Duncan MacLeod, does not know how to resurrect and does not like to die. His task is to quickly and safely squeeze out money and dump before the police arrive. And it is citizens who can spoil their plans, especially if citizens are armed and protected by law. " (27)

Let’s look at weapons as a commodity. Potentially dangerous, but protecting life, useful, developing the economy of goods, from the sale of which the tax is paid, i.e. the budget is replenished.

Buying a weapon for self-defense is no more dangerous than buying pyrotechnics, cars, motorcycles, pneumatic hammers, chainsaws, knives or axes.

The state is obliged to help citizens to protect their lives and property, that’s why the police exist. But the police will not have time to arrive at the time of rape, murder, robbery. So, the state can not provide citizens with protection of their life and health. Therefore, it is obliged to allow them to do this on their own; to acquire weapons for self-defense.

Everything is extremely simple. On one side of the scale is the observance of human rights to life, to health, to work, to rest, as well as budget revenues, which means pensions, allowances, roads, kindergartens and schools. And on the other side of the scale is a violation of human rights, a budget deficit, low pensions, bad roads, queues in kindergartens, underfunding of medicine and science, crowded school classes, street crime and serious crimes. So what makes sense to vote?

The criminal will remain a criminal, regardless of what he was armed with a crime — a knife or a pistol.

A law-abiding citizen will not cease to be a law-abiding citizen if he has a gun under his jacket.

If this is not the case, how is the policeman different from the bandit? After all, they are both armed.

Quite often, before, drivers kept a mount — a heavy metal club — under the seat. Almost all drivers, almost every car.

How often did they use it?

Do policemen often shoot?

Do gunmen often shoot?

Why then would law-abiding citizens suddenly open fire?

The presence of goods on store shelves and vegetables on other people’s gardens does not make people thieves.

The presence of beautiful women and men does not always lead to adultery.

The weakness of children is not a provocation of violence.

The sale of knives does not lead to an increase in murders and does not force a person to kill.

There is a notion of presumption of innocence, so it is necessary to separate “flies from cutlets”.

Theft is a crime, a deviation from the norm. The presence of this fact does not lead to the closure of shops and the enclosing of fields and gardens with barbed wire.

Murder is a crime, but not an excuse for prohibiting the sale of knives, axes, hunting rifles, etc.

Adultery is a personal sin within the same family and is her private affair. It is not good for the state to interfere with the citizens’ bedcourts, if these matters do not threaten the life and health of other people.

Cruelty to the weak — children, women — is a crime. But not an excuse for banning family or procreation.

Let’s focus not on the units of geeks and criminals, but on millions of law-abiding taxpayers.

The legalization of weapons for self-defense, the legalization of the carrying of weapons is not a matter of morality or morality, it is not a matter of the policy of “whatever happens”, but the simple and unconditional observance of the human right to life and health.

From the economic point of view, the legalization of weapons is the preservation of the life and health of taxpayers, the reduction of budget expenditures, new jobs in the legal arms industry — shops, sellers, repairs, maintenance… and this again taxes, taxes, incomes and budget revenues. This decrease in the level of street crime, a reduction in the number of robberies and crimes against the individual.

And it is profitable. It is advantageous for the state to respect human rights.

The right to bear and own weapons is an instrument for protecting life and health — this is part of the human right to life and health. The economic effect, the impact on the country’s budget, the impact on the criminal situation in the country from the legalization of carrying weapons is very significant. Crime and budget expenditures are declining, and budget revenues are increasing.

Everyone has the right to life. It follows from this that he has the right to defend his life. Than? This is regulated by law. A knife and a baseball bat, an ax… or a gun.

It is important to remember that the threat of life from bandits comes against the requirements of the law.

Hence, the right to own and bear arms is an unconditional human right, for this is his right to life.

The legalization of the arms market leads to the confidence of citizens in immediate protection, without waiting for the arrival of police. Simultaneously with the replenishment of the budget, the legal sale of weapons reduces the number of illegal, non-taxable sales.

Think about it. How much does an hour of police work for a country? How many hours does a policeman spend to work on illegal weapons? How many hours will the policeman (police) spend on the investigation of the crime? Multiply by the number of crimes against the person and property. And you will learn how much the budget will save from a simple line in the law “free acquisition, storage and carrying of firearms are allowed”.

However, it can be even easier. If the government is afraid of its citizens, if it manages so that there is a risk of insurrection, then arms prohibit power. If the government manages well, if it does not fear its citizens, then the weapon will be legalized. The rest is wickedness.

If the reader has doubts about the reliability of the data, objectivity and usefulness of the author’s arguments, if the reader continues to be tormented by doubts and habitual notions about what is acceptable, if the reader thinks that legalization is threatening problems, then let’s change the angle slightly.

According to the UN declaration, and according to the reasonable thinking of any person about his personal life, human rights are primary relative to all other rights and interests. And if the author managed to convince the reader that the right to arms is the realization of the human right to life and health, then the state is obliged to realize this right by legalizing the possession and carrying of weapons.

Does it threaten anything? Maybe. Although the facts say the opposite. Nevertheless, if we talk in terms of threats, then we must immediately abandon the sale of knives and axes in stores, prohibit the use of cars, trains, planes and much more. For their use is also associated with threats and consequences.

That is why the author insists that it is necessary to discuss not so much the harm or benefit of legalization, but how the violation violates human rights. If it violates — legalization is necessary.

It is from these positions that all other issues and prohibitions set forth in this book will be considered.

In the modern world, human rights are primary. Every single person, not an abstract society or state. The rest is cunning.

Prostitution and the right to life, health, work, rest
Or … “The state! Do not go to bed with people! Take care of a worthy deed!”

Strange as it may seem, talking about crime, which can be greatly reduced through the legalization of weapons, immediately leads us to the question, and at the expense of which the criminals live, where the maximum of crimes against the person is committed, where the state also does not want to ensure the inhabitants the right to life and health. And also for work and rest. The first thing that comes to mind when talking about crime is drugs and prostitution.

Let’s start with prostitution — one of the types of criminal business that is not criminalized by the will of people employed in it, but by the will of a state that does not want to legalize their work.

The same was in the United States when introducing a “dry law”. Illegal alcohol immediately became the cause of the growth of crime.

If tomorrow some state wants to prohibit milk, milkmen will fall into the sphere of criminal attention. They will forbid treatment — the crime will be dealt with by doctors.

So is it reasonable to prohibit?

A person has the right to work. This right is as immutable as the right to life.

Prostitution is work. If someone does not believe — he can try and make sure.

Maybe this work is not prestigious, it may not be very aesthetic, someone may not like this profession, but so are the sanitizers or pathologists, too, are not among the prestigious professions. The janitor is also not prestigious. Or the waiter.

But just as the state provides the right to work for a nurse, nurse or social worker, it is obliged to ensure the right to work and rest for a prostitute (prostitute), and hence to legalize prostitution.

Not all people want to be prostitutes. But not everyone wants to be policemen, doctors, teachers, plumbers, politicians, officials, dancers, masseurs, hairdressers or programmers.

A woman does not become a criminal by choosing the work of a janitor or waitress. But it becomes, choosing the work of a prostitute.

A waitress woman can call the police if the client does not pay if she behaves badly. And the waitress will get protection, and the client — the punishment. But a prostitute can not.

However, not only a woman, but also a man. For, as prostitutes are of both sexes, so are the clients.

I ask the reader not to consider the author as a sexist. The author will use the word prostitute, woman or she only in the above context. The context of the two sexes is both clients and employees. The female genus will be used solely to reduce the amount of text, as well as the most common type of sexual services. Women’s services for men.

From the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 3.

Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.

Article 4.

No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.

Article 5.

No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

Article 7.

All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination.

Article 23.

(1) Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment.

(2) Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work.

(3) Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration ensuring for himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection.

(4) Everyone has the right to form and to join trade unions for the protection of his interests.

Article 24.

Everyone has the right to rest and leisure, including reasonable limitation of working hours and periodic holidays with pay.

Article 25.

(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.

The most important thing in the legalization of prostitution is the reduction of crime around her. Legalized prostitutes are starting to pay taxes to the country, not the mafia and not the pimp. Both the client and the employee are protected by the police from crime (we also remember the right to arms). The crime ceases to receive money from prostitution and weakens. The police do not spend their time and taxpayers’ money on catching a person who decided to rest and catch a person who decided to earn by providing the client with such a rest option.

It would probably be rather strange if the police broke into a cafe and arrested a musician, waitresses and visitors at a time when some are working and others are resting. At the same time, both of them regularly pay taxes.

But the law and the philistine consider the musician and the waiter to be a “white profession”, and “prostitution” is a black one. After all, hardly anyone objects to the fact that prostitution is a profession. Segregated, discriminated in some countries, banned, but a profession. Those. there is discrimination on the basis of occupation, activity, profession.

But who cares? As once the “white people” did not care about the rights of immigrants from Africa.

As for family and morality, it does not depend on the employee, but on the client. In the cafe, you can also twist the adultery, destroy the family and spread diseases in the nearest motel. And not only in the cafe, and not only in the motel.

Prostitution, in terms of business — it’s just a service industry.

The service sector is a very profitable branch of the economy. In many countries, this sector (tourism refers to it, for example) brings a significant share of budget revenues.

From the perspective of human rights, the right to engage in prostitution is the right to work and the right to rest.

In terms of sales — a person can sell either the brain or the body (intelligence skills or body skills). We do not declare criminals models working in art institutes or in the open air of artists. The police do not catch athletes, masseurs, ballerinas, models that earn their body. Skills of this body. No one comes to mind to declare a fashion designer, choreographer or coach as a pimp.

All of them are protected by law. They, their life, their work.

And not legalized prostitution threatens the life and health of a prostitute and her client. It increases the number of crimes, contributes to the growth of crime, reduces revenues to the budget and attracts additional budget expenditures.

Legalization of prostitution, on the contrary, leads to the elimination of budgetary costs for catching prostitutes and their clients, to reducing the budget expenditures for investigating criminal incidents in this area, as well as for the receipt of additional taxes from workers in the sphere of sexual services.

Think and count:

How much time does the police spend in the fight against prostitution?

In what amounts does it cost the budget, or rather the taxpayers, that is, you?

And compare, for example, with the amount of taxes paid by prostitutes in Germany or the Netherlands.


Fortunately, as in the case of weapons, there are examples of countries where prostitution is legalized. This allows us to evaluate this legislative step in the experiment, both from the point of view of the economy and from the point of view of human rights.


Prostitution in Austria is legal, but it was not always so. The law of 1885 outlawed both prostitutes and their clients and intermediaries.

Only in 1973 the Constitutional Court ruled that this law is contrary to the Constitution. Since then, the number of officially working in Austria, prostitutes varies between 3,500 and 6,000. They serve about 15,000 customers a day. And they pay taxes from their income.

Austrian laws recognize a prostitute as an entrepreneur, oblige to pay taxes, stipulate compulsory medical examination, and also regulate the places and time of their work.


Prostitution in Belgium is legal. Prostitutes enjoy the same rights as all working citizens. Including the right to retirement, security and health. All these aspects of life and work of prostitutes in Belgium are fully protected by law. Taxes also regularly come to the treasury.


In Bolivia, prostitution is legal. This is especially noticeable during the strikes of prostitutes, which happen very regularly.


Prostitution in Brazil is legal and probably very beneficial for the budget, as the government refused to provide $ 40 billion in AIDS assistance under the terms of the prohibition of prostitution. Ie, logically, the amount of budget revenues from this type of business to the treasury of Brazil is more than $ 40 billion.

United Kingdom

Prostitution in the UK is legal. However, since 2009, contact with a prostitute, who was forced to engage in body trafficking, is criminally punishable, even if the client did not know about the slave position of the employee.


In Hungary, a prostitute is a law-abiding entrepreneur and has the same rights and protections as an employee of any other service or trade. A prostitute has the right to open a business, register it and work as legally as any store. Advertising of services is allowed. Including in the newspapers.


Prostitution in Germany is legal for EU citizens. State bodies protect the rights of prostitutes, the consequence of this is the safe behavior of clients and the absence of criminal activity around this legal business. Prostitution is considered an official profession. A prostitute pays taxes, complies with laws, and after the end of his career, receives a pension, like people from other professions.

About 400,000 women are engaged in prostitution in Germany. The annual turnover of this legal business is approximately 6 billion euros. With this money, taxes are paid in full, replenishing the budget.

In Bonn for the payment of tax by street prostitutes there are special devices similar to automatic machines for parking payment. A prostitute, going to work, pays through this device 6 euros per shift. As a result, in 2011 the city budget received an additional 250 thousand euros. A quarter million extra income only within the same city! The annual turnover of the entire sex industry in Bonn is about 2 billion euros. (28)

The legalization of prostitution in Germany significantly reduced the risk of crime in this business. Prostitutes can complain about the client to the police, file a lawsuit against him.

Of course, legalization gave prostitutes in Germany not only the right to protection, but also the duty to pay taxes, contributions to the pension fund.

Like in any other country, prostitution is one of the favorite topics of political chatterboxes. And most of their arguments are about morality. The historical perspective allows us to take a close look at these moralists and understand the true value of their arguments.

So at the beginning of the 20th century, in Germany, the faction of the Nazi Party (ie Fascists) in the Bundestag was against the legalization of prostitution, because it “threatens the moral and racial bases of the family”. Der Sturmer believed that the adoption of the law on the legalization of prostitution “is beneficial to Marxists and Jews.”

On February 28, 1933, the day after the Reichstag arson, an “Extraordinary Decree on the Protection of the People and the State” was adopted. A man in his right mind can not understand how prostitution and the arson of the Reichstag are connected, but the arson and the “Extraordinary Decree” led to the arrest of tens of thousands of prostitutes throughout Germany.

For example, in Hamburg in the spring and summer of 1933, 3201 women were arrested, only on suspicion of prostitution, 814 of them remained in prison for quite some time.

Prostitutes “disappeared”. The party of the Center of Germany was pleased and voted on March 24, 1933 for giving the government of Hitler emergency powers. The Social Democrats objected to these powers (well, the members of the Communist Party of Germany were already in prison at that time).

Those. in pursuit of morality… Germany received Hitler.

A very clear story for moralists and champions of the prohibition of prostitution. Which is not tricky. As it was said above — the legalization of prostitution ensures human rights for work, life, health and recreation. And human rights and Hitler are diametrically different concepts.

But back to history.

Very soon, the Nazi government, which received full power, softened its moral principles.

On September 9, 1939, the Nazi government issued a decree restoring the regulation of prostitution. The decree stated that “where special prostitution houses still do not exist, the police should organize them in suitable areas for this.” By 1942, the police organized 28 brothels in Berlin. (4) That’s all there is to know about moralists, the price of their words and arguments.


In Greece, prostitution is also legal. It can be used by men and women who have reached the age of 21. Of course, from their income they pay taxes that supplement the country’s budget. Employees of this profession (as, indeed, the employees of many other professions — cooks, drivers, pilots, etc.) should undergo regular physical examination.


In Denmark, by law, only those people who have some other source of income can be engaged in prostitution. (31) There is a certain logic in this. The source of income outside of prostitution allows us to assert that it was not poverty and need that pushed the market for sex services, but something else. To some extent this is an insurance against trafficking in human beings and compulsion to engage in prostitution. A well-fed person is difficult to force something, if he does not like it.

Proponents of morality in this connection want to point out that at the main place of work, a prostitute can be a teacher, an educator, and a trainer. Or a financial worker, a pilot, a bus driver, a waitress. Danes do not care. They are worried about another — some Danes believe that the services of a prostitute must be included in the state social package for the disabled, along with medical assistance.


Prostitution in Israel is legal. Brothels and pimping are illegal. The annual turnover is approximately $ 2 billion shekels a year. (4)


Prostitution in Spain is illegal. And this immediately leads to the growth of crime. So, according to Wikipedia, in 2007 in Spain, only officially found 1035 victims of sexual slavery.

However, it is useful for moralists to know certain facts. So in 1076, in some parts of Spain, the ban on prostitution was treated very ingeniously. A woman who was at night in the vicinity of a male bath could be raped with impunity. Such an unusual concern for morality. It was herded, probably also by select moralists…

Morality quite often took very bizarre outlines when it came to prostitution. So in 1325, King Jaime II founded the first red light district in Spain in Valencia and surrounded it with a high wall. The king ordered all women of easygoing demeanor to move into this quarter. It is important to note the word “move”. Those. despite the prohibitions, prostitution continued to exist.

Further medieval moralists did as follows…

Many municipalities began to ask the king to allow them to create the same neighborhoods in their cities. The permission was obtained and the “red lights” appeared in Tarragona in 1325, in Barcelona in 1330, in Castellón in 1401 and in Mallorca in 1411. Also brothels were opened in the kingdom of Valencia in the cities of Orihuela, Elche, Sagunto, Vila-reale, Alsir and Gandia. And before 1450, also in the cities of the kingdom of Aragon: Daroca, Huesca, Jaca, Barbastro, Sobreba, Cataluyde and Zaragoza.

In 1476, Queen Isabella, the wife of King Aragonese Ferdinand, ordered all prostitutes in Castile to pay tax. Probably, to maintain morale in society.

Catholic kings widely distributed licenses to open brothels to city municipalities, charitable organizations and their associates. As a result, brothels were opened in 1479 in cities such as Segovia, Cuenca, Toledo, Valladolid, Logroño, Madrid, Medina del Campo, Palencia, Ecija, Carmona, Sevilla, Cordoba, Granada, Jerez de la Frontera, Malaga, Salamanca, etc. As they say… all for the sake of morality…

Since then, prostitution in Spain has been banned, it has been allowed many more times.

Currently, brothels in Spain are banned, but there are quite a few “clubs” that do not hide much and function as semi-legal brothels.

On 25 January 2005, the Spanish National Court of Justice declared prostitution a legitimate economic activity in the lawsuit between the National Association of Entrepreneurs of Messalina and the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs of Spain. A judge from Barcelona recognized the right of a prostitute to pay contributions to the system of state social insurance, because the woman is engaged in “labor for the benefit of society.” However, the courts referred to the European Court’s decision of 2001, in which prostitution is regarded as a “legal form of economic activity”.


In Italy, there are no brothels, they are prohibited by a special law from 1958. But in private, sex services are not prohibited. Punish only pimps and traffickers. Clients who did not pay prostitutes are treated as rapists. In 2010, in Italy, 70,000 prostitutes from 60 countries worked. In December 2002, the Italian authorities passed a law permitting prostitution in private homes. And street prostitutes face fine and arrest. (28)

In the Middle Ages in Italy, some cities tried to expel prostitutes (Bologna in 1259, Venice in 1266 and 1314, Modena in 1326), but unsuccessfully, for demand generates a proposal. Florence in 1287 ordered that within a radius of 0.5 km from the city there were no brothels, but already in 1325 again began to register urban prostitutes and the allocation for them of separate areas. In 1355 prostitutes were forbidden to appear in the city on all days, except Saturday and Monday. And according to the decree of 1384, prostitutes were ordered to wear bells on the head, gloves and shoes with high heels.

Since 1401, Naples began to impose prostitutes tax.

On April 30, 1403 in Florence, the Onesty police were created, which controlled prostitution, based on the writings of Augustine and Thomas Aquinas, who considered prostitution an indispensable institution for satisfying the sexual desires of men and an alternative to homosexuality. In the latter part, their views coincided with the position of Minister of the Interior of Nazi Germany Himmler, who was also a homophobe and saw in prostitution salvation from homosexuality.

Since 1823, the municipality of Palermo began issuing licenses to open brothels in the city. In 1841, at the request of the King of Naples, a compulsory medical examination for prostitutes was introduced. Likewise, Bologna also entered, having established even a special hospital for prostitutes.

The first law on prostitution in the united Italy was adopted on February 15, 1860. The number of registered prostitutes reached a peak in 1881 — 10,422 girls; in 1948 there were 4,000 of them, and in 1958, 2,560.

In 1923 Mussolini ordered all prostitutes to wear special passes, in which the results of their examination for venereal diseases were noted.

During the occupation of Ethiopia, special houses of tolerance for the needs of the army were created in Addis Ababa. Separate brothels were established for Italians, separate brothels for local residents.


In Colombia, prostitution and brothels are legal. The activities of prostitutes are limited to “zones of tolerance” — districts specially designated for legal activities.


Prostitution in Latvia has been legal since 1998. Prostitutes, under the law of 2017, must be at least 25 years old, have a health certificate (health card issued by a venereologist) and can provide sexual services only in their own or removable living quarters. A client who uses the services of a minor prostitute risks a fine of 350 to 700 euros (29, 30)

The number of prostitutes in 2005 was estimated at between 10 and 30 thousand. The legalization of prostitution in Latvia has led to a significant increase in the flow of tourists. And here it is important to understand that tourists at the same time use not only the services of girls, but also rent housing, pay for the hotel, for travel, for food. Those. the legalization of prostitution had a beneficial effect on the Latvian economy and the development of the tourism industry.


Prostitution in the Netherlands is legal, and near the red light district of Oude Kerk, in fact, in the center of Amsterdam, stands the statue Belle, on the pedestal of which it says: “Respect sex workers of the world.”

According to official figures, in 2000, between 20,000 and 25,000 prostitutes worked in the Netherlands. Including:

• 32% of Dutch citizens,

• 25% of visitors from Eastern Europe and the European Union,

• 22% of newcomers from Latin America,

• 21% of newcomers from Africa and Asia.

In the Netherlands every year, from 1,000 to 1,700 victims of sexual slavery are registered. In 2008, 763 women from Hungary were identified, 60% of whom were forcibly involved in prostitution. Is it the fault of the legalization of prostitution, is it the fault of legislators? Hardly. If prostitution were illegal, then the percentage of forced exploitation would be much higher. But of course there are questions to the work of the police.

Modern s

The argument that the legalization of prostitution leads to trafficking and forced exploitation does not stand up to criticism. First, these are shortcomings in police work, and secondly, there are many other ways of violent exploitation and modern slavery. For example, the creation of clandestine shops, where they are held in slavery and forced to slave labor not prostitutes, but seamstresses or people of other specialties. So the profession and legalization of prostitution is not to do with it.

Do not think that slavery and prostitution are equivalent concepts. Slavery, human trafficking, the concept is much broader, and therefore is not the cause of prostitution and lead to the prohibition of prostitution. The causes of trafficking lie in a completely different plane and the ban on prostitution is more likely to promote the slave trade than the legalization of sex workers’ work.

Let’s look at the numbers. According to the Global Estimates of Modern Slavery study prepared by the Walk Free Foundation in conjunction with other organizations in 2017, 40 million people worldwide are in slavery, earning up to $ 32 billion annually. Of these 40 million, only 5 million slaves (99% of the cases are women) are involved in the sex industry. (140, 141)

But apart from sex slavery there is still a huge layer of labor slavery, child slavery.

According to the Walk Free Foundation, Russia ranks 7th in the world in terms of the total number of slaves — over 1 million. The majority are labor. (142, 143)

In February 1985, the first World Congress of Prostitutes was held in Amsterdam. The Congress was held on the initiative of the head of the American organization COYOTE Margarita James and her like-minded Gale Featherson. At the congress, the International Committee for the Rights of Prostitutes was established, and the Charter of Rights of Prostitutes around the world was adopted. The public organization “Red thread” was established, which set itself the goal to achieve the legalization of prostitution. This organization, as well as the de Graaf Foundation and the Fund against Trafficking in Women, have become the main lobbyists for the legalization of prostitution. In January 1988, the Netherlands government recognized prostitution as a profession. On October 1, 2000, the Netherlands allowed the opening of brothels. Since then, the Oude Kerk quarter in Amsterdam is not only the place of sale of sex services, but also a tourist attraction.

In Holland, women and men who earn a living with their own body have equal rights with all other working citizens. They pay taxes, and in return receive the right to health insurance, funded pensions and vacation. Prostitutes should have a medical certificate, the age of the prostitute must be at least 18 years old, the age limit for clients is 16 years.

New Zealand

New Zealand legalized prostitution more than 10 years ago. The law protects both prostitutes and their clients. Even pimping in New Zealand is legal.

Costa Rica

In Costa Rica, prostitution is legal and protected by law. Tolerance houses and individual activities are permitted. Prostitutes should have a medical book with them and be over 18 years of age.


Prostitution in Singapore is allowed from the age of 18. There are special quarters of red lanterns. Prostitutes undergo regular physical examinations. (32)


Women in Turkey work as prostitutes not only at will, but can also serve their sentence, as in prison. (29)

Only women can be engaged in prostitution. Men are forbidden.

Matilda Manukyan (1914 — 2001), owner of a network of brothels in Turkey, was the largest taxpayer in Istanbul in the 1990s. (4)


Prostitution in Finland is not officially banned, but there is a ban on brothels and pimping. Also, the purchase of sexual services from victims of trafficking in persons, prostitutes under the control of pimps and persons under 18 years of age is punishable. Those who pay a prostitute, knowing that she was forced to have sex, faces four months in prison or a fine. Buying and selling in public places is punishable by a fine.

According to data for 2015 in Helsinki on the streets worked prostitutes from Africa, Russia, Estonia and Romania. Basically, according to the Finnish police, 90% of sex services are advertised on the Internet and sold in private premises.

The sober approach of Finnish policemen is respected. The Finnish police are combating trafficking in human beings and forcing women to prostitution. According to the representative of the Finnish Ministry of Justice, Janne Kanerva, the most obvious sign that trafficking occurs is the presence of an intermediary or the payment of “services” to a third party.

According to the THL Health and Welfare Office’s research for 2013, 95% of Finnish prostitutes use condoms, and 60% have been tested for HIV during the last half-year. Half of sex workers are vaccinated against hepatitis B. It is noteworthy that the respondents of this study answered questions in Finnish in 32% of cases, in Russian in 34%, and in Thai in 30%.


Prostitution is legal, but since 1946, outlaws are brothels, pimps, street pestering and prostitution among minors. A prostitute who spoke to a man on the street faces a fine of up to $ 1,500, and a pimp can receive up to 2 years’ imprisonment. (28)

Czech Republic

Occupation of prostitution in the Czech Republic is not prosecuted by law. But the organization of brothels is considered a crime.


In Chile, prostitution is legal. Since 2009, laws have been enacted in the country that provide for the social and physical protection of prostitutes. Prostitutes were even allowed to publish a textbook, in order to teach police to respect the rights of female workers in this profession. (28)


Prostitution in Switzerland has been legal since 1942. A sex worker must be over 18 years of age, and a brothel must undergo a licensing procedure. In 2010, Zurich opened a special public house for gays.


In Ecuador, prostitution is legal. Public houses are licensed. One of the motives for the legalization of prostitution and licensing of brothels was not even budget revenues or any lobbying, but the fight against prostitution of minors, crime and containing sex slaves. It was from the women who were forcibly involved in prostitution that the contingent of underground brothels at the end of the twentieth century consisted. Legalization helped solve this criminal problem.


Since 1956, prostitution has been banned. But, of course, there is. The turnover of this services market is more than 2.3 trillion yen or 0.4—0.5% of GDP. However, in Japan, “sex industry” and “prostitution” are different things. Prostitution, according to Japanese laws, is vaginal sex for money. Therefore, there are absolutely legal, for example, sex clubs offering oral sex. These services are regulated by the 1948 law “On Enterprises Affecting Public Morality.” (4)

Occupations of prostitution are also legal in South Africa, Canada, most of Mexico, in Australia, as well as in countries of southeast Asia (with the exception of the Philippines and China). In the US, prostitution is allowed only in a few counties in the state of Nevada; in fact — in Las Vegas (since 1971). In Sweden, Norway and Iceland, the offense is committed by a client, not a prostitute. (36, 37)

One can debate for a long time the consequences of legalizing prostitution. It is possible to discuss just as long the consequences of the ban. However, these discussions are not important. It is important whether human rights are respected in the legalization of prostitution. Or they are observed with the prohibition. It is important to observe human rights, not arguments, why these rights should not be respected.

The point is not whether the legalization of prostitution or anything else is good or bad, but whether the right to engage in prostitution, the right to use this service to the right of a person to work and rest. Does the prohibition on prostitution limit the right to life and health for a prostitute and her client. And if the answer is positive, then prostitution should be legalized.

Drugs. The right to life also means the right to die. Or “The state! Be honest!”

Another nutrient environment for crime, another hole in the budget, another waste, instead of income, another failure to respect the human rights to life and health — drugs.

In this chapter we will look at some methods of combating drugs and criminal drug trafficking. These measures, on the one hand, make it possible to fully observe human rights, and on the other hand, reduce the number of drug addicts and illegal drug trafficking, prevent the emergence of new heavy drugs, and deprive drug revenue banks of the income and market.

These measures, despite the softness and unconventionality, have made it possible to achieve what could not be achieved with harsh police methods for many years. Namely: reduce the number of drug addicts, increase the number of requests for medical help to narcologists, increase the number of refusals from drugs, reduce the number of “first-time users”, reduce deaths from overdose, reduce the incidence of AIDS, hepatitis, tuberculosis.

We will analyze this by examples of countries that have partially or fully legalized drugs or have used such a method of struggle as decriminalization of drug use.

It is important to understand that drugs are not just heroin or marijuana, but also tobacco and alcohol freely sold in every supermarket. These drugs are legalized almost everywhere. The rest — almost everywhere outside the law for many years. And for many years the ban does not bring any economic benefit to countries and does not reduce the number of drug addicts or drug trafficking. This is called Sisyphean labor.

And this despite the fact that illegal marijuana or LSD have less public harm than alcohol. Addiction, addiction, to ecstasy, hallucinogens or marijuana, develops to a much lesser degree than to tobacco or alcohol.

The turnover of drugs is, on the one hand, a huge expenditure of the budget for catching drug addicts and dealers, and on the other hand — an excellent ground for criminals. The consequences of the ban are well known and have long been tested. The ban is income for crime and corruption.

The Global Commission on Narcotic Policy in June 2011 recommended that countries “experiment with the legal regulation of certain types of drugs that are permissible for possible legalization, in order to combat drug trafficking.”

What will happen if drugs are legalized?

Then they just like cigarettes or alcohol will start to bring income to the country’s budget, and not into the pocket of the mafia. The police will not deal with catching drug addicts with taxpayer money, but with protecting life and property of taxpayers.

Is it possible to legalize, for example, heroin?

Heroin is, in principle, a pretty quick death. If a person has the right to life, then he has the right to interrupt her at will. Otherwise, all hunting rifles should be banned — they can be shot, all high-rise buildings — they can jump off and commit suicide, all trains can be thrown under them. And, of course, you need to prohibit gas stoves and the sale of ropes in stores.

Will everyone rush to buy heroin if it can be sold legally? Of course not. Especially if lighter forms of drugs are available. Will everyone rush to sell heroin? Also no. Because they sell only what they buy. On what there is a demand.

Not so many people buy the permitted drugs — alcohol and tobacco. And strong alcohol buys even fewer people. So why should people rush to buy or sell a legalized heroin?

But to advertise drugs, including alcohol and tobacco, of course not worth it. Here the ban is completely justified.

As for soft drugs, drugs such as alcohol and nicotine have been legalized, then the ban on the legalization of marijuana, LSD or ecstasy looks rather strange and false.

We will analyze the statistics of prohibitions and permits for drugs in different countries, because, as in the case of prostitution, there are already examples of legalization or decriminalization of drugs.

From the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 3.

Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.

Article 5.

No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

Article 7.

All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination.

Article 12.

No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.

Article 17.

(1) Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.

(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.

Article 18.

Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.

Article 19.

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.


In Australia, as in the United States, there is a difference in legislation for different territories. In the capital, you can freely store 25 g of marijuana (excess is punishable by a fine of $ 100), and in Queensland for a couple of cigarettes you can get 15 years in prison. (49) In Western Australia, storage and private use of marijuana are allowed (up to 2 plants, for excess — fine). In South Australia, New South Wales and Tasmania, the storage of hash is not considered a major offense.

Different and punishments. In Western Australia, people are sent for counseling to psychologists. In New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania, the storage and use of cannabis is considered a criminal offense, but more often the perpetrators are sent not to prison but to study or treatment. (51)

Since 2016, medical use of marijuana is allowed in Australia everywhere. (50)


The Austrian Law on Narcotic Substances of 1998 distinguishes drug producers and those who use them. The punishment depends on which group the violator belongs to. Drug use is decriminalized, that is not a criminal offense. However, possession for personal purposes is punishable by a fine or arrest for six months. It is permitted to use marijuana for medical or scientific purposes. (52, 53)


In 2009, marijuana was decriminalized in minimal doses. (54)


In 2003, the Belgian Parliament passed a law on the legalization of weak drugs. (55) Smoking marijuana, as well as drinking alcohol — you can. However, if as a result a person breaks the public order, breaking the law in the altered state of consciousness will automatically add to the hooliganism a more serious narcotic article.

It is prohibited to smoke in public places, store and purchase more than 3g of marijuana, but you can grow one plant. Also, the use of cannabis (cannabis) for medical purposes is permitted.

Despite the ban on smoking in public places, marijuana can be smoked while driving a car. (56)


In Brazil, marijuana is illegal, but for its storage (as well as for the storage of any drugs) is not threatened with prison. In 2006, the country adopted a law that introduced alternative types of punishment for drug addicts. Drug traffickers and drug addicts are subjected to fundamentally different punishments. (57)

United Kingdom

Since 2002, the storage of small quantities of hemp and its derivatives is not a crime. But the police can arrest those who use marijuana, for example, in the presence of children. (58) In the same year, the UK authorities transferred marijuana from Class B to Class C, which includes, for example, steroids.

June 17, 2016. two leading British public health organizations, the Royal Society for Health and the Public Health Council, called for the permission to store and use for personal use all types of drugs. Experts of the organizations believe that the British state policy on drugs has failed. The report, entitled “A New Approach to Drugs”, argues that criminal prosecution of drug addicts is ineffective and the threat of punishment only increases the chances of the addict dying of an overdose and is an obstacle for the treatment of drug addicts for medical care. The authors of the report call for the adoption of the Portuguese system in Britain, when people who are caught using drugs are offered help, and not punished. President of the Royal Society for the Protection of Health Shirley Kramer said that the time has come for a new approach, and we must recognize that drug use is a health problem, not a criminal law, and that those who use drugs illegally need treatment and support, and not punishment.


Since 1993, in Venezuela, for those who have been caught with two grams of cocaine or 20 grams of cannabis, the prison has been replaced by “measures of social impact”. Such people arrested for storing drugs for personal use are sent for treatment. (59)


The medical use of cannabis is legal since 2007. As of April 2016, hemp received 647 patients. Keeping marijuana can be both legal and not, depending on the amount of grass and local laws. Most laws of the various “lands” of Germany allow storing up to 5g of marijuana.

The German police do not pursue citizens for keeping a “small amount” for personal consumption. But can delay for smoking marijuana in public places, at school or in the presence of children. (60, 61)


Since 2011, the Danish Medical Agency has authorized the use of three varieties of medical cannabis for a patient with cancer or multiple sclerosis. (62)


Since 1994, Israel has been allowed to use marijuana to people who suffer from cancer, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, chronic pain, post-traumatic stress disorder. (63)


Since 1992, in Spain, the use of marijuana is an administrative crime. For storage of “grass” or smoking on the street a fine of up to 300 euros is possible. Storing more than 40 g of cannabis, spreading and growing marijuana is a criminal offense (from 1 to 3 years). (64)

Smoking cannabis in public places is prohibited, but there are specialized clubs of marijuana lovers, which in Spain are about 500. (65)


In Cambodia, marijuana is illegal. Application for medical purposes or in cooking is not prosecuted. In local restaurants Happy Pizza with cannabis is openly sold, and in the markets — “cheerful” confectionery. (66)


Since 2001, smoking marijuana is permitted for medical purposes. The grass can be legally grown if there is a doctor’s order and a special permit that is issued to patients with various forms of cancer, AIDS, arthritis and multiple sclerosis. (67) In Canadian Vancouver medical marijuana is prescribed to people who complain of a bad dream. In mid-2015, the city had about 80 shops selling cannabis. (68) By 2018 full legalization of marijuana is planned. (1, 69)


Since 2015, it is allowed to store up to 20g of cannabis and grow up to 20 plants for personal purposes. (70, 71, 72)


Since 2015, the storage of a small amount of marijuana and a number of other drugs has been decriminalized. The crime is not the presence of 3.5 g of cannabis, two grams of other drugs or two Ecstasy tablets. Excess is punishable by a fine of 50 to 125 euros.


In Mexico since 2009, the presence of 5g of marijuana, 2g opium, 500mg of cocaine, 50mg of heroin, 40mg of amphetamine and up to 0.015mg of LSD is not a crime. (73)


Drugs are officially divided into “light” and “heavy” since 1972. (74)

Storage of 30 g of “light” drugs is decriminalized. “Heavy” drugs are prohibited. In Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Utrecht and in 100 cities, legal coffeeshops with permission to sell marijuana, hallucinogenic fungi and other light drugs work. The purpose of legal coffeeshops is to compete with illegal heavy drugs.

However, the storage, production and sale of any drugs are illegal. This is a bit inconsistent and hypocritical. But coffeeshops and their clients, who want to be law-abiding, manage to fit into a 30-gram “Procrustean bed”. People over the age of 18 can buy up to five grams of cannabis daily in coffeeshops. The purchase of drugs on the street is illegal.


Since 1988, it is allowed to store for personal use up to two grams of cocaine or heroin and up to 10 grams of cannabis. (75)


Portugal decriminalized drugs in 2001. What does it mean? Drugs remain illegal, but their storage for personal purposes will not lead to prison. Even heroin. (76, 77) At the same time, the sale of drugs is prohibited.

In Portugal it is allowed to store one gram of heroin, MDMA or amphetamine, two grams of cocaine and up to 25 grams of cannabis. If such stocks are discovered, the police do not arrest the addict, but sends them to the “explanatory commission”, which consists of lawyers, social workers and psychologists. Multiple meetings with the commission may result in sending for treatment.

The Commission can take one of the following decisions:

— fine from 25 to 150 euros;

— to forbid to occupy posts that assume responsibility for someone else’s life;

— prohibit visiting night clubs;

— prohibit traveling abroad;

— prohibit the carrying of weapons;

— confiscate all personal drug stocks;

— to deprive state benefits, if any (very serious, by the way, a measure, since the size of the benefit is close to the minimum wage, that is, it can be a full-fledged source of personal income).

The measures are quite reasonable — the main task of the commission is to try to motivate a person to treat and to protect the lives of people with whom he, in one way or another, communicates.

At the same time and everywhere in Portugal dozens of state centers for the provision of assistance, detoxification and psychological rehabilitation of drug addicts work. Opiate drug addicts undergo substitution treatment with methadone and buprenorphine. Regional reintegration programs conduct regular trainings for former drug addicts, help with finding work and housing. Portuguese pharmacies for free exchange used syringes for new ones, as well as issue a set of several syringes, a condom, cotton wool with alcohol and a brochure about rehabilitation. Similar sets are distributed in the streets.

Decriminalization of drugs in Portugal has led to a sharp decline in the number of HIV-infected people, deaths from overdose and heroin addicts.

Again! The decriminalization of all drugs has led to a decrease in the number of people using the heaviest of the drugs in question — heroin. In the late 1990s, heroin was used by 100,000 Portuguese people, now — 50,000, many of whom are trying to recover.

Prior to 2001, Portugal was one of the most problem areas in the European Union with regard to drug addiction and was leading the EU in terms of the number of HIV-infected among drug addicts. In a country with a population of 10 million people, there were 2000 new cases of HIV every year. The highest percentage of AIDS deaths in the EU was also recorded here.

For 20 years, Portuguese authorities have been fighting drug addiction with standard force methods. Of course, unsuccessfully. And then the government decided to act humanely and at the same time revolutionary. The state decriminalized the storage of all kinds of drugs and began to fight the disease, with drug addiction, and not with people. This is logical. After all, no one is fighting a patient who has a stomach ulcer or flu. Fight disease.

This is logical, but apparently not all state men are available. In drug addicts, they see not people, but scum, criminals. Although they themselves do not mind indulging in such a drug as alcohol — from beer to whiskey, or such as a cigar

The squalidness of the authorities, as a rule, is the main cause of the problems of the inhabitants. It is this, not drugs, weapons, immigrants or prostitution. By the number of taboo topics in the society, by the number of bans, we can fairly accurately judge the degree of maturity of society. And the position and actions of the Portuguese authorities on the background of other countries look even more dignified.

Decriminalization of drugs in Portugal was preceded by the large work of the commission on the development of a national drug control strategy.

The measures taken have made it possible to achieve the main goal — problems and dangers have become much less for the drug addicts themselves and for other people.

And all it was necessary to look out for the state baton and think about every inhabitant, as a person. A person who has the right to life and health. A person who has the right to independently manage his life.

What did this lead to?

Portugal did not become a Mecca for heroin users, did not fall into a coma, did not win drug addiction. (And where and who won?).

And here are the numbers:

Cases of HIV among drug addicts in 2001 (only fixed) — 1000. In 2012 — only 56!

Death from drugs: in 2001, 80 people, in 2012 — significantly less — 16 people.

Criminal cases related to drug offenses (and budget expenses for conducting these cases, of course). In 2001, there were 14,000 cases. In 2012 — 6000 cases — the budget is saved more than half.

Single use of drugs in Portugal declined in all age groups. This is especially important in the group of 15—24 years. At this age, “single use” means “tried or not.” This means that people who tried drugs, it became in Portugal the least due to decriminalization. (79, 80)

Decriminalization of drugs has led Portugal to European leaders in terms of drug safety.

Stopping to label drug addicts as criminals, the authorities significantly increased the number of those who voluntarily choose treatment.

And money for treatment was safely left — because they stopped spending on useless police chase and trials over drug addicts.

Instead of spending on the “whip”, the Portuguese authorities decided to spend money on the “carrot” — the development of substitution programs and rehabilitation centers. And the result did not keep itself waiting.

UNODC World Drug Report 2016

From the drug overdose in Portugal at the moment in the year, 3 people per million adults die — one of the lowest rates in Europe. (In Russia, about 100 thousand people a year die from an overdose, that is, more than a thousand people per million adults). (81, 82)

An indirect confirmation of the success of decriminalization is that now, 15 years after the adoption of this reasonable decision, not a single Portuguese politician in pursuit of votes has stuttered on the topic of a return to past force-based anti-drug practices. People need to try to heal, not plant for their habits.


The US has been actively fighting for many years both with prostitution and with drugs. Fights unsuccessfully, spending huge amounts of money on this fight. On tracking down, capture, courts, prisons…

These means, yes for good purposes…


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