Huemer's Argument Analysis

2010 Words 9 Pages
Huemer argues that a few different arguments that drug war advocates advance are false. One of the arguments Huemer targets is the Harm to Users argument. For this question, lay out the harm to users argument in premise-conclusion form and explain why drug war advocates who like this argument think that each premise is true. After doing this, identify which premise Huemer uses the Howard case to undermine (i.e. identify which premise the Howard case is supposed to show is false). Then, explain the Howard case (i.e. who Howard is, what he does, etc.) and why Huemer thinks the Howard case shows that the premise in the Harm to Users argument is false.

In his paper “America’s Unjust Drug War” Michael Huemer presents an argument for the drug war called the Harm to Users argument that is laid out as such:
(P1) Drug use is very harmful to users.
(P2) The government should prohibit people from doing things that harm themselves.
( C ) Therefore, the government should prohibit drug use.
This is an argument that appears to be pretty convincing. Someone who would
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One of the objections that he addresses is what he calls that Violation of Rights Objection. He lays the objection out as such. Drug laws are immoral due to the fact that they violate people’s rights to self-sovereignty–that is, “a moral right to control our own minds and bodies”. As this objection goes, the government should not consider drugs illegal as they are substances that are taken by people that only affect that person’s body and mind. In addition to that, drugs do not tend to harm people in any serious capacity, even some that do not harm people at all. As follows, since drugs only affect people’s own minds through their own actions it is not the place of the government to determine what people ingest and thus legislating it violates people’s rights to

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