On the release of Jamie xx’s second album In Colour I realised something about his music. Having his name come up frequently recently in conversation, it’s clear to me he is a zeitgeist of today’s youth culture in Britain. And, as he admits in an interview with Pitchfork, his transient sounds are exactly where it’s at with its drug habits.
There is a necessary discussion that needs to be had about drugs in the UK. While Britons often scold the US as being backwards in moving forwards, America has made leaps and bounds in their attitude towards the ‘war on drugs’ – that has resulted in prolific state legalisation and improved control in the trade of cannabis. Granted, there were some honest people who suffered because of these laws, but that is more than made up for by the amount of victims in common black markets.
The UK is ready for a similar drug reformation act. Our drug culture is huge, so we need to have an honest and mature approach towards regulating it. If the likes of Portugal, Uruguay, and Canada are all doing it, it’s time we ourselves reimbursed the cool chips that were cashed in some time after the sixties.
But there’s not even a voice for such a campaign. Until the recent general election, there was no organised strategy for bringing serious effective change, despite what people from all corners of society talk about daily while smoking a spliff or taking a bump.
I’m not condoning the specific use of any singular drug. But legalisation is the only way to responsibly manage the social, economic and medical effects of drug use. And anyone that agrees should think seriously about their involvement in what is an increasingly unstable criminal industry.
The time is ripe; Cameron’s washing his hands of the nation’s health problems while taxing us out of our personal comforts; with more actors in Hollywood than in living memory, Britain is ready for something bold and fashionable; and with Jamie xx providing the soundtrack, it’s going to make a nostalgic experience for our otherwise listless and useless youth.