Letter to the Editor: A Different Take on The War on Drugs

To the Editor:

Despite DEA Agent Michael McManus’ claims to the contrary (News article, November 4), drugs are purer, cheaper and at least as available – if not more so – than any time since the current war on drugs began some 30 years ago.

In 1910, officials estimated that about 1.3 percent of the American public was addicted to drugs. When President Nixon called for the current war on drugs, he said 1.3 percent of Americans were addicts. Today, after spending a trillion dollars and arresting millions the estimate is…1.3 percent!

What has changed is the millions of lives ruined, not by drugs, but by drug prohibition. Thousands of students have been denied financial aid for college because of a drug conviction. Countless families have been torn apart, countless children have been orphaned and entire neighborhoods have been ruined. Prisons are overcrowded, courts are clogged, police are corrupted, countries have been invaded and civil rights have been taken away. All this in the name of drug prohibition. I hope Colgate will secure a speaker from ReconsiDer (www.reconsider.org) or Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (www.leap.cc) to present this side of the issue as well.