Pubdate: Wed, 20 Feb 2002 Source: Rock River Times (IL) Copyright: The Rock River Times 2002 Contact: http://www.rockrivertimes.com/ Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/539 Author: Kirk Muse WHAT ABOUT CAFFEINE? Dear Editor: Major kudos to M. L. Simon for another outstanding OPED: "DRUG RELATED" ( 2-13-02 ). Almost all of our so-called drug-related crime is actually drug prohibition-caused crime. At the turn of the last century, there was no such thing as "drug-related" crime. That's because Bayer heroin was legally available at local pharmacies for about the same price as Bayer aspirin. Also Coca-Cola contained cocaine instead of caffeine and sold for 5 cents a bottle. Today, caffeine addicts don't have to rob, steal or prostitute themselves to buy a Coke, Pepsi or cup of coffee. That's because their drug of choice, caffeine, is legal. If caffeine were prohibited, the situation would be just like it is today with other prohibited substances. A black market would soon develop in caffeine, and caffeine products would be sold only by criminals. The price of caffeine products would skyrocket. Actually, it makes more since to prohibit caffeine rather than marijuana because there is a lethal dosage for caffeine, but not for marijuana. But prohibition doesn't work except to assure the full employment of those doing the prohibiting. If prohibition worked, tobacco should be the first substance prohibited and alcohol the second. But prohibition doesn't work, and it never will. Kirk Muse, Mesa, Ariz.