Pubdate: Fri, 20 Apr 2007
Source: Austin American-Statesman (TX)
Copyright: 2007 Austin American-Statesman
Author: Kirk Muse


Re: April 10 editorial "Wave of killings threatens to swamp Calderon."

When is the last time the American-Statesman ran front-page stories 
about alcohol cartels engaged in gun battles in the streets? Probably 
about 1933, the year we terminated the disaster known as alcohol prohibition.

If the United States and Mexico legalized all of our now illegal 
drugs so they can be sold in regulated and licensed business 
establishments for pennies per dose, would this solve our drug problems? No.

But it would substantially reduce our crime rate. Alcohol prohibition 
was not abolished in 1933 because it was decided that alcohol was not 
so bad but because of the crime and corruption that prohibition 
caused. In 1933, our overall crime rate declined substantially and 
our murder rate declined for 10 consecutive years.

Have we learned any lessons from this experience? Not yet.

Kirk Muse
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