When Professor David Nutt was sacked by Alan Johnson as head of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs a couple of weeks ago, The Sun newspaper made it clear that it thought Johnson had been correct to do so.
Although I disagree with The Sun and I feel that they often distort the debate about drugs I do understand that there are people who have real fears about what liberalisation of drug laws could mean (although I think they are misguided). The Sun is entitled to their opinion about this. They make their case and it is up to those of us who believe that a legalised and regulated framework would reduce harm, crime and have all sorts of other benefits as I have blogged about many times to make our case and try to talk people round to our view. I fully accept The Sun’s right to argue their side of the case too, and indeed they regularly do. In fact David Nutt is not in favour of legalisation of drugs but it is fair to say that his comments could eventually lead to this argument being taken more seriously and that seems to be how The Sun have treated them.
Yesterday however The Sun decided not to engage with the debate on this issue. Instead they decided to attack and smear Professor Nutt’s children. I am not going to link the The Sun’s “story” on this (you can find it via Graham Linehan’s tweet that alerted me to it here if you wish). I am however just going to highlight a few of the tactics they have employed in this disgusting gutter “journalism” they have decided to indulge in.