Pubdate: Fri, 15 Aug 2008
Source: Bellevue Leader (NE)
Copyright: 2008 Suburban Newspapers Inc.
Author: Melanie Marshall


Thank you for printing the article, "Former police officer makes case
for legalization of drugs."

After 10 years of searching, I have yet to find many benefits from
waging this expensive war on our own citizens. Retired officer Tony
Ryan is correct when he compares drug prohibition to alcohol
prohibition, but the main difference is that we are more familiar with
alcohol and accept it, even though it's the most dangerous drug we
play with.

Our illegal drugs aren't nearly as dangerous as alcohol, but we are
ignorant and fearful of them, so this war continues.

Sadly, we are harmed more than helped as we fork over about 70 billion
dollars a year to terrify countless families (pets are shot and guns
are pointed at children in adrenaline-soaked raids) for substances
that can be sold in the legal market.

If drugs were sold legally, however, it would mean many layoffs of
those who fight illegal drugs for a living. Maybe we could retrain
them to hunt for and arrest those who intentionally damage others,
especially sexual predators who scar their victims for life.

Resident Joe Fowler asked, "How do you tell your child that something
is very dangerous when the government says it's legal?" The same way
you tell them about alcohol, cars, and guns: Teach them safe handling,
and teach them the truth.

Once we see what illegal drugs really are and make drug addiction a
health problem instead of a legal problem, these deeply embedded but
incorrect beliefs will be in our history books, and we will enjoy a
less violent nation.

Melanie Marshall
- ---
MAP posted-by: Larry Seguin