Pubdate: Sun, 22 Sep 2013
Source: East Valley Tribune (AZ)
Copyright: 2013 East Valley Tribune.
Author: Kirk Muse


I am writing about Bill Richardson's thoughtful column: "Our new 
crime-riddled 'Five C's' and what to do about them" (Commentary, 
Tribune, Sept. 18).

I have no doubt that serious crime is linked to organized crime. From 
1920 to 1933, the majority of our serious crime was linked to alcohol 
prohibition. When we terminated alcohol prohibition our overall crime 
rate declined dramatically.

Do I suggest that all drugs should be sold like they were 100 years 
ago in grocery stores and pharmacies with no questions asked? No. For 
hard drugs like heroin, meth and cocaine I suggest that we adopt the 
Swiss drug policy. Switzerland used to have a very serious heroin 
addiction problem. Now their heroin problem is a small fraction of 
what it used to be.

Did the Swiss government get really tough on drug dealers and addicts? No.

In 1994, Switzerland started an experimental program to sell heroin 
addicts the drug at very low cost, even giving it to the addicts who 
couldn't afford it. In 2008, 68 percent of the Swiss voted to make 
the program permanent.

Have Swiss heroin-addiction rates skyrocketed? No, they have fallen 
dramatically. And so has their overall crime rate.

For the record, I have never even seen cocaine, meth or heroin, 
(except on TV) let alone used it. But I was offered free samples of 
these drugs by my marijuana suppliers. Yet I have never been offered 
a free sample of whiskey, rum or vodka when buying wine.

For those who think we can win the war on drugs if we just try harder 
I suggest they Google or go to and search for "Retired 
police captain demolished the war on drugs."

Kirk Muse

- ---
MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom