So yesterday, you might’ve seen reports that the president of the Australian Drug Law Reform Foundation, Dr Alex Wodak, vowed to go head-to-head with the NSW government and roll out pill-testing trials, even if it means breaking the law.

“We are going to do this,” he told Fairfax. “Doctors, analysts who know how to operate the [testing] machines and peer interviewers who can translate the scientific results and explain to people why the drug they bought is talcum powder or highly toxic. The idea is to save lives. I am prepared to break the law to save young people’s lives.”

What you might have missed in the flurry of news reports about Wodak’s bold and bloody great statement is NSW Premier Mike Baird‘s response, who dismissed pill testing at festivals as “ridiculous” and proclaimed current police efforts to combat drug use as “working”.

“We are not going to be condoning in any way what illegal drug dealers are doing,” he told reporters yesterday.

“There is a very safe way to go about pills and that is, don’t take them.”

Despite the very real possibility that Mike Baird considers his local chemist to be a legal drug dealer, he’s also demonstrating a complete lack of understanding about people and drugs – namely, that despite heavy penalties for possession and supply, increasing police crackdowns, and the widely-criticised practises of using sniffer dogs and roadside drug-testing, people are still going to experiment with drugs and prohibition doesn’t bloody work.

Last year, two people died at the Sydney and Adelaide legs of Stereosonic, one person died at Defqon.1, one person at A State Of Trance, and one person at Dragon Dreaming, not to mention dozens of other overdoses and hundreds of charges laid. What part, exactly, of the current police method is working?

On the other end of a very short scale, Baird is totally for medical marijuana trials. Guess keeping people safe is selective, hey?



Photo: Daniel Munoz / Getty / Source.