Pubdate: Thu, 14 Feb 2002
Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution (GA)
Copyright: 2002 Cox Interactive Media.
Authors: Mike Anthony, Daniel Boling

Bill O'Reilly

Drug War Is Costly

So Bill O'Reilly believes that drug use is incompatible with patriotism 
("Drug use and patriotism incompatible,"  Feb. 11)?

What O'Reilly ignores is that the ability to provide this massive funding 
through the drug trade is due to the artificially high profits to be made 
precisely because drugs are illegal. Many drugs (pot, cocaine and heroin) 
derive from plants that could be grown easily and cheaply in a legitimate 
climate; others can be manufactured cheaply in a laboratory. The street 
value of these drugs is many times the true cost because of the heavy 
penalties associated with trafficking in them. This additional profit of 
trading in a black market provides the funding for terrorist or other 
criminal enterprises.

Regardless of the legality, some people will consume drugs (as some will 
consume alcohol), whether legal or illegal. The real issue here is not 
whether there will be drugs; the issue is who will control that market. And 
the decision to put that market in the hands of the morally unfit has not 
quelled the use of drugs, but has contributed to untold amounts of crime 
and violence that threaten the lives and property of all Americans, even 
those not associated with the drug trade.

I ask O'Reilly: How patriotic is it to support that?


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Tobacco, Alcohol Deserve Scorn

Bill O'Reilly states that "supporting criminals who sell addictive 
substances is anti-American." I couldn't agree more. Those criminals should 
be stopped, put out of business and run out of town. Can we start with U.S. 
tobacco companies?

Americans can see the horrors brought about by socially acceptable yet 
extremely deadly drugs. By saying it's OK to buy alcohol and cigarettes but 
not marijuana, lawmakers send mixed messages to a confused public.

When O'Reilly has the guts to stand up to their terrorist-lobbyists, and 
when he's ready to honestly discuss the real addiction problems caused by 
their anti-American industries, he can come talk to me about ridding the 
country of the true drug fiends killing us: alcohol and tobacco.

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