Pubdate: Wed, 29 Oct 2003
Source: The Southeast Missourian (MO)
Copyright: 2003, Southeast Missourian
Author: Tony L. Smee
Bookmark: (Drug Courts)
Bookmark: (Treatment)


To the editor:

Paul J. Allee's letter regarding equal justice is either an uninformed
liberal lob or a thinly veiled attempt at class warfare. Equal justice for
all is not a "kooky liberal idea" but the cornerstone of our country that is
constantly being hewn.

I tend to research the topics I feel passionately about. One of those topics
is the claim that conservatives are elitist, hypocritical, bigoted and
classist. The vehicle being used to promote this notion is Rush Limbaugh's
drug addiction case.

Missouri is one of many states that has a drug court system. Its intent is
to provide treatment-based alternatives to prison. One of the main
objectives is rehabilitation and prevention of future abuse. The recidivism
rate is about 4 percent.

In Southeast Missouri, Dunklin County was the first to institute this
program for adults (1998) based on the need for a treatment-based program
for low-income, high-risk offenders. This proves there is no conspiratorial
effort to mete out unfair punishment based on class, race or social

Laws and prosecutions for drug use offenses vary widely by jurisdiction and
are based largely on that jurisdiction's ability to successfully process and
prosecute that type of offense. My heartfelt praise to Limbaugh for
initiating similar treatment of his own free will and at his expense. This
most likely will not only expedite his time in court, but will probably
relieve Florida taxpayers from tens of thousands of dollars to process his

Tony L. Smee

Cape Girardeau
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