Pubdate: Tue, 17 Jan 2012 Source: Calgary Herald (CN AB) Copyright: 2012 Canwest Publishing Inc. Contact: http://www2.canada.com/calgaryherald/letters.html Website: http://www.calgaryherald.com/ Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/66 Author: Mark Persinger Referenced: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v12/n040/a01.html?1311 FOSSILIZED THINKING Re: "Treason," Letter, Jan. 14., and "Ecstasy victims showed extreme symptoms," Jan. 16. Much like Ronald Reagan's Just Say No policy of the 1980s, Dave Reesor's idea of harsh minimum penalties for drug producers belongs in a museum. Claiming that illegal organizations produce and distribute illegal drugs for anything but profit is an opinion-biased argument. Using the case study of the United States as an example for failed drug policy, it is clear that harsher prohibition has not affected the consumer demand for drugs in any way. Instead, it has pushed production south, into Mexico, where a violent drug war has claimed an estimated 47,500 lives since 2007 as gangs fight for control over unregulated distribution networks into the U.S.A. These unregulated markets also mean that producers can cut drugs such as ecstasy with cheaper substances to maximize profit. If pills laced with paramethoxymetham-phetamine are to blame in recent deaths, it would be in the Calgary Police Service's best interest to re-lease pictures of the pills in question, along with their trademark insignia, to effectively warn the public of the dangers. This strategy is called harm reduction and is an alternative to prohibition, which failed to prevent the five deaths in Calgary and 16 in British Columbia. How many more deaths will happen before our elected officials open their eyes to the true dangers of drug prohibition? Mark Persinger Calgary - --- MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.