Samuel Alito Thinks It’s Obviously Absurd To Suggest That Drug Prohibition Violates the Constitution

Source: Reason
by Jacob Sullum

“Justice Samuel Alito’s draft majority opinion overturning the Supreme Court’s abortion precedents touches on drug legalization in a way that raises interesting issues regarding the government’s authority to forbid the consumption of certain intoxicants. ‘Attempts to justify abortion through appeals to a broader right to autonomy and to define one’s ‘concept of existence’ prove too much,’ Alito writes. ‘Those criteria, at a high level of generality, could license fundamental rights to illicit drug use, prostitution, and the like. None of these rights has any claim to being deeply rooted in history.’ I am not so sure about that. … if the test for whether a right is ‘deeply rooted in history’ hinges largely on whether Americans were long accustomed to exercising it without government interference, the freedom to consume intoxicants seems like a more plausible candidate than the right to abortion.” (05/06/22)