Pizza and Politics Discusses Drugs: Behind Bars or Behind Counters

Pizza and Politics’ most recent event was held on Wed. Oct. 30 hosted by the Micheal O. Leavitt Center. This week’s topic was Drugs: Behind Bars or Behind Counters.

The discussion opened with the question, should drug-related misdemeanors and felonies and their related sentences be standardized across the U.S. or left to individual states?

Some students argued that if a person committed a drug-related crime in a state with harsher laws, they could move to a different state to avoid that certain conviction. One participant pointed out that in instances wherein these crimes happen more frequently, the punishment should be different.

These laws currently differ from state to state, but this could change in the near future.

The discussion then shifted to Supervised Consumption Service clinics and whether or not they help people recover from addiction. 

Tyler Barber, a senior French major, shared one solution.

“I think the problem we have in this society is we push a lot of shame to these people and we assume that they don’t want to be better,” he said. “…These clinics can help with that shame factor. People can get the help they need without that fear and shame and they can start to get over that addiction.”

Another question branched off of this topic: should these Supervised Consumption Service clinics or rehab facilities in general be paid for by the individual or be government subsidized?

“I think something like this needs to be a non-profit,” said Savannah Robinson, a junior philosophy major. “A lot of people who do have drug addictions are under the poverty level. They may not have [enough money] to throw at these rehabilitation clinics.

“A non-profit wouldn’t have to use taxpayer dollars… It would be run by donations. Drug addiction shouldn’t be something that is overlooked in our society and we should find ways to help with that.”

The discussion turned to the importance of awareness and how reporting suspicious behavior will help Cedar City community members be healthy and safe. Approximately 130 lbs of meth were seized on I-15 in Enoch by Cedar City Police recently.

All students are welcome to attend Pizza and Politics held every Wednesday at noon in the Micheal O. Leavitt Center, located in the Sharwan Smith Student Center.

Story By: Moriah Spainhower
Photos Courtesy Of Moriah Spainhower

Edited to reflect the standards of SUU News