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"One of the problems that the marijuana reform movement consistently faces is that everyone wants to talk about what marijuana does, but no one ever wants to look at what marijuana prohibition does. Marijuana never kicks down your door in the middle of the night. Marijuana never locks up sick and dying people, does not suppress medical research, does not peek in bedroom windows. Even if one takes every reefer madness allegation of the prohibitionists at face value, marijuana prohibition has done far more harm to far more people than marijuana ever could."

— Richard Cowan



Prohibition Isn't Free Foundation is a research and educational foundation dedicated to providing clear and scientifically-supported information about the costs of prohibition to society.

Too often, the debate about drug policy is bogged down in endless discussions about the perceived danger of a particular drug. Such discussions are at best, incomplete, and at worst, irrelevant.

If one believes that the government has the authority to prohibit a drug, it's not enough to say that a certain drug should be illegal because it is dangerous to individuals or society. One must show:

  1. that it is dangerous,
  2. that criminalization actually significantly reduces the danger,
  3. that criminalization is the best way to reduce the danger, and
  4. that the side effects of criminalization won't be worse.

Otherwise the argument is meaningless.

A primary function of the Prohibition Isn't Free Foundation is to insure that policymakers and citizens are armed with comprehensive information about the societal costs of prohibition when drug policy is being discussed. Additionally, the Foundation analyzes all aspects of the prohibition regime, from history to implementation, in order to properly evaluate alternatives.