Pubdate: Sat, 09 Mar 2002
Source: Florence Times Daily (AL)
Copyright: 2002 Times Daily
Author: Allan Erickson


To the Editor:

Frank Powell's letter, "That's a brilliant idea" (March 2) was itself 
brilliant. Dead wrong, but brilliant. While he thinks he speaks with tongue 
not-so-subtly in cheek, he actually has his foot in his mouth.

Comparing drug use to bank robbery, kidnapping and speeding is, well ... 
what was he smoking? Ridiculous comparisons and exaggerations are terrible 
debating tactics. Prohibition of drugs, as with the historical attempt at 
alcohol prohibition, is a self-perpetuating exercise in futility. Substance 
abuse is a medical problem and there are a million substances to abuse:

A 1998 survey by the state Attorney General's Office listed inhalants as 
the most popular illicit drug among seventh-graders, with 18 percent having 
used them. And the National Inhalant Prevention Coalition said in 2000 that 
one in five eighth-graders have huffed.

Will we have the DEA raiding our kitchen cabinets? How many of our rights 
must we surrender to this prohibition beast? How much more of our 
constitution are we willing to sacrifice? Powell should give it up, come 
with facts next time and leave his attitude home.

Allan Erickson, Eugene, Ore.
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