Pubdate: Mon, 14 Oct 2002
Source: Capital Times, The  (WI)
Copyright: 2002 The Capital Times
Author: Robert Sharpe


Dear Editor:

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Prof. Al Gedicks' Sept. 16 op-ed on 
Colombia was easily one of the best I've read on the subject.

Plan Colombia could very well spread both coca production and civil war 
throughout South America. U.S. tax dollars would be better spent addressing 
the socioeconomic causes of civil strife rather than applying overwhelming 
military force to attack the symptoms.  We're not doing the Colombian 
people any favors by funding civil war. Nor are Americans being protected 
from drugs.

Destroy the Colombian coca crop and production will boom in Peru, Bolivia 
and Ecuador. Destroy every last plant in South America and domestic 
methamphetamine production will increase to meet the demand for 
cocaine-like drugs.

The self-professed free market champions in Congress can't apply basic 
economic principles to drug policy.

Instead of wasting scarce resources waging a futile supply-side war abroad, 
we should be funding cost-effective drug treatment here at home.

Robert Sharpe
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