Pubdate: Tue, 17 Apr 2001
Source: Washington Post (DC)
Copyright: 2001 The Washington Post Company
Section: Health, Page T04
Author: Bob Goodin


"A Smarter War on Drug Abuse" [Second Opinion, April 10] did not
address a key element in the problem of drugs -- namely, the huge
criminal activity relating to their acquisition.

The current "war on drugs" follows a model that was proven wrong
two-thirds of a century ago: Prohibition. It didn't work with alcohol,
and it cannot work with drugs.

What I learned from the history of prohibiting alcohol and then
repealing that prohibition was that tough, regulated legal use of
drugs would eliminate the illegal supply and create a legal business
with drugs. I have only heard the opponents attack legalization by
assuming that there would be no controls on the manufacture and
distribution of drugs. Of course, no one wants that, but with careful
regulation of drug use, a controlled supply of drugs with safeguards
would eliminate the multi-billion-dollar industry that has subverted
governments and ruined so many lives.

Bob Goodin

- ---
MAP posted-by: Richard Lake