Pubdate: Wed, 18 Apr 2012
Source: Ledger-Enquirer (Columbus, GA)
Copyright: 2012 Ledger-Enquirer
Author: Robert Sharpe


Regarding George Will's April 15 column, there is a middle ground
between drug prohibition and full legalization. Switzerland's heroin
maintenance program has been shown to reduce disease, death and crime
among chronic users. The success of the Swiss program has inspired
pilot projects in Canada, Germany, Spain, Denmark and the Netherlands.
If expanded, heroin maintenance would deprive organized crime of a
core client base. This would render illegal heroin trafficking
unprofitable and spare future generations addiction.

Marijuana should be taxed and sold like alcohol, only without the
widespread advertising. As long as organized crime controls
distribution, marijuana consumers will come into contact with hard
drugs like methamphetamine, cocaine and heroin. This "gateway" is a
direct result of marijuana prohibition. Unlike alcohol, marijuana has
never been shown to cause an overdose death, nor does it share the
addictive properties of tobacco. Marijuana may be relatively harmless,
but marijuana prohibition is deadly.

For information on the efficacy of heroin maintenance please read the
following British Medical Journal report:

Robert Sharpe

Common Sense for Drug Policy

Washington, D.C.
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