Pubdate: Fri,  8 Aug 2003
Source: West Hawaii Today (HI)
Contact:  2003 West Hawaii Today
Author: Matt Binder
Bookmark: (Methamphetamine)
Note: To read about the "ice epidemic" in Hawaii, go to .



It appears that the U.S. Attorney for Hawaii, Edward Kubo, has a full-blown
case of "George Bush Syndrome." That's the disease where a high government
official lies to the public about a problem, then proposes the most drastic
solution to his own, made-up problem.

I'm referring to your article yesterday, "Ice War: Law changes needed," in
which Kubo claimed that one out of every 10 residents of the state of Hawaii
is either a hard-core or recreational user of methamphetamines. His remedy
for the problem: change the Constitution to allow more wiretaps, random
searches, and seizures of property without arrest.

Kubo's hugely exaggerated claim was so preposterous that it didn't last even
one day, as the researcher at the University of Hawaii who had been cited as
the source for the claim quickly disavowed it, saying the real number of ice
users is five times less than that cited by Kubo. But the affair certainly
revealed the authoritarian tendencies of some of our government officials.
Instead of proposing things like treatment and counseling for ice users -
things which have been proven to actually work but cost a little more money
- -Kubo proposes radical changes to our Bill of Rights.

Like George Bush and his war-mongering cabinet, Kubo and other
"drug-warriors" know that the public loves and cherishes the freedoms
granted under the Constitution, so they lie and exaggerate to scare us into
going to war or giving up our civil rights. Now that they are in office, the
Constitution is a messy thing that they would rather not have to deal with
as they pursue their lust for power. 

We are in year 30 of the "War on Drugs" as declared by President Nixon, and
further from our goal than ever before. It's time to stop believing the hype
and the tougher-than-thou rhetoric. This is a huge, complex problem that
requires deft handling. We need honest politicians who aren't lying when
they put their hands on the Bible and vow to "preserve, protect, and defend
the Constitution of the United States." There are far too many who want to
subvert, ignore, and suspend it.

Matt Binder

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