Pubdate: Mon, 11 Feb 2002
Source: Herald-Dispatch, The (WV)
Copyright: 2002 The Herald-Dispatch
Author: Redford Givens


Regarding your Page One story of Feb. 5, "Action sought to derail pushers."

If people in Huntington want to reduce crime and violence, the worst thing 
they can do is escalate the lunatic drug prohibition policy responsible for 
these problems in the first place.

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.

When drugs were legal, addicts held regular employment, raised decent 
families and were indistinguishable from their teetotaling neighbors. 
Overdoses were virtually unheard of when addicts used cheap pure Bayer 
heroin instead of the expensive toxic potions prohibition puts on the 
streets. (See: The Consumers Union Report on Licit and Illicit Drugs

Where drug crime once was unheard of, we now have prisons overflowing with 
drug users. Where addicts lived normal lives, we have hundreds of thousands 
of shattered families. Where overdoses were extremely rare, we have tens of 
thousands of drug deaths every year. The addiction rate is now five times 
greater than when we had no laws at all.

Eighty-five percent of the street crime and robberies in Huntington are a 
direct result of a lunatic drug crusade that has never worked for anything, 
anywhere, anytime.

It's worth mentioning that the crime rate dropped substantially after the 
repeal of prohibition and the return of legal alcohol. No doubt ending the 
drug war and regulating adult drug use would have similar effects.

Redford Givens, San Francisco
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