Pubdate: Thu, 30 May 2002
Source: Clarksdale Press Register (MS)
Copyright: 2002, Clarksdale Press Register
Author: Redford Givens


Dear Editor:

It's time to wake up to the fact that enforcing drug laws is a primary 
cause of much of the robbery, burglary and property crimes in Clarksdale 
and Coahoma County.

The lunatic drug battle being fought by the Clarksdale Police Department, 
Coahoma County Sheriff's Department, Mississippi Highway Patrol, 
Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, 
U.S. Marshal's Service and Drug Enforcement Administration is not only a 
colossal waste of manpower and money; these campaigns actually increase 
criminal activity to buy drugs by driving black market prices higher.

It's worth remembering that the United States never had anything remotely 
resembling a "drug problem" until after our insane drug-prohibition laws 
went on the books. When drugs were legal no one was robbing, whoring and 
murdering over drugs when addicts could buy all of the heroin, cocaine, 
morphine, opium and anything else they wanted cheaply and legally at the 
corner pharmacy. All of our "drug crime" is caused by a brain-dead drug 
policy that has never worked for anything, anywhere, anytime.

When drugs were legal, addicts held regular employment, raised decent 
families and were indistinguishable from their teetotaling neighbors. 
America's drug crusaders are responsible for thousands of unnecessary "drug 
deaths" every year because overdoses were virtually unheard of when addicts 
used cheap, pure "Bayer Heroin" instead of the toxic potions prohibition 
puts on the streets.

It's time for Mississippi to abandon a delirious drug-prohibition scheme 
that causes more troubles than alcohol prohibition.

Redford Givens, San Francisco
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