LETTER OF THE WEEK
Politicians still speak of winning the war on drugs, but that war is over. And guess what? We lost.
Despite all government efforts to the contrary, our borders are becoming ever more porous to hard drugs. American entrepreneurial genius has made marijuana a major cash crop in many states, and meth labs are popping faster than we can close them. Isn’t it high time we rethought our drug policies?
As with alcohol, prostitution and gambling, control funded through taxation makes more sense than attempted eradication, an admirable but futile undertaking. Legalization with control not only removes the allure of drug profits but impacts the companion crimes of prostitution, theft and police corruption. It will also relieve a criminal justice system overwhelmed with simple marijuana possession cases.
There is little correlation between harsher drug laws and drug abuse. Norway and Sweden share a common border and Nordic culture. Norway has moderate drug policies while Sweden’s laws are much stricter. But both have essentially the same addiction rates.
A Zogby poll published last May in The Economist magazine found a narrow majority of Americans favor some form of legalization and control. But this, in no way, means approval, merely acceptance of reality.
GEORGE B. REED JR.
Pubdate: Mon, 12 Apr 2010
Source: Chattanooga Times Free Press (TN)