Pubdate: Wed, 08 Mar 2006
Source: Fort Worth Weekly (TX)
Copyright: 2006 Fort Worth Weekly
Author: Colleen Minter


To the editor: Regarding "Bling, Bang, Little Gangstas" (Feb. 15,
2006): These kids need help. They want to feel like they belong to
something! We need to provide a safer environment that meets their
social needs.

The truth about drugs will keep our children off them. Sound medical
and unbiased scientific knowledge is the most effective moral
persuasion. Present policy falsehoods and scare tactics have
undermined our credibility. People are going to self-medicate, smoke,
drink, and party no matter what the law says. The best we can hope
from our policies is to reduce the harm.

Fewer deaths are attributed to illicit drug use than to the violence
and crime triggered by drug prohibition, plus prohibition destroys
families. The drug war has orphaned an estimated 9 million American

How many lives do we owe reparations for because in the '70s the
mission in American drug law enforcement changed from "Serve and
Protect" to "Lie to Justify" (your salary)? This admission coming from
former cops is shocking. According to Jack Cole of LEAP (Law
Enforcement Against Prohibition) and a former undercover narcotics
officer, "We said users were dealers. We lied about the amount. We
lied about the street value."

Tobacco, alcohol, and pharmaceuticals account for almost a full
quarter of all those who die each year in the United States. Illicit
drugs account for less than 1 percent of total deaths, and no deaths
are attributed to marijuana. The drug war hysteria is created to take
our eyes off the real killers we tolerate.

I am a once-proud American because my country once stood for freedom
from oppression. America now has the dubious honor of having more
people in prison than any country in the world. The Land of the Used
to be Free is the most incarcerated nation in history.

Leaders responsible for the current quagmire will have to answer to a
higher power for their crimes against humanity. It's time to end the
terror by changing our intrusive, big-bully policies, both foreign and
domestic. The monetary costs are staggering and the human suffering

Colleen Minter