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US CT PUB LTE: Drug War Is Foolish, Expensive Practice

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URL: http://www.mapinc.or...1/n324/a14.html

Newshawk: http://www.virginianorml.org

Votes: 0

Pubdate: Fri, 20 May 2011

Source: Norwich Bulletin (CT)

Copyright: 2011 GateHouse Media, Inc.

Contact:male2('letters','norwichbulletin.com'); letters@norwichbulletin.com

Website: http://www.norwichbulletin.com/

Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/2206

Author: Robert Sharpe

Referenced: http://www.mapinc.or...1/n291/a10.html

 

 

 

DRUG WAR IS FOOLISH, EXPENSIVE PRACTICE

 

With regard to Roberta Helming's May 6 column, the drug war is largely a war on marijuana smokers. In 2009, there were 858,405 marijuana arrests in the United States, almost 90 percent for simple possession. At a time when state and local governments are laying off police, firefighters and teachers, this country continues to spend enormous public resources criminalizing Americans who prefer marijuana to martinis. The end result of this ongoing culture war is not necessarily lower rates of use.

 

The United States has higher rates of marijuana use than the Netherlands, where marijuana is legally available. Decriminalization is long overdue. Taxing and regulating marijuana would render the drug war obsolete. As long as organized crime controls distribution, marijuana consumers will come into contact with sellers of hard drugs such as methamphetamine, cocaine and heroin. This "gateway" is a direct result of marijuana prohibition.

 

ROBERT SHARPE

 

Washington, D.C.

 

Robert Sharpe is a policy analyst with Washington, D.C.-based Common Sense for Drug Policy.

MAP posted-by: Richard Lake

Edited by greenbuddha
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