Tuesday, May 12, 2015

US and Latin America in 2025

I read this article by Bill LeoGrande in the Huffington Post on the U.S. and Latin America in 2025 and immediately kicked myself for not thinking of the idea first. What a fun idea. For the most part he has a pretty optimistic view. For example:

Following successful experiments in Colorado and Washington, most other states will legalize marijuana for recreational use, drastically reducing the profitability of this segment of the illegal drug trade. At the same time, Washington politicians will embrace the stance pioneered by Barack Obama's administration and treat narcotics addiction as a public health emergency rather than a "war on drugs." Gradually, the consumption of cocaine and heroin will decline, and the contraction of demand will put even greater pressure on the profitability of the trafficking cartels. That will enable governments from Colombia to Mexico to finally get the upper hand against the traffickers, reducing criminal violence and corruption -- just as the end of Prohibition in the United States enabled U.S. authorities to get the upper hand against the Mafia.

Let's hope so! This outcome alone would have a major impact on the region, and on U.S.-Latin American relations. Despite the Obama administration's stated shift on drugs as public health, there is still serious disagreement about strategies to fight the drug war. It was only just yesterday that the U.S. grudgingly accepted Colombia's decision to stop spraying herbicides.


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