Pubdate: Fri, 09 May 2014
Source: Recorder, The (MA)
Copyright: 2014 The Recorder
Author: William Chambers


Over the past few weeks, The Recorder as done an admirable job
bringing to light the drug epidemic facing our community, however time
and time again the people in charge of curing this epidemic are given
a pass. The biggest failure on the "War on Drugs" has been focusing on
ending the supply, while ignoring the demand curve, with the most
recent headline being "We can't arrest our way out of this" (May 6).
That cannot be further from the truth.

Instead of focusing our efforts on stopping a seemingly endless
supply, we should be aggressively aiming to stop the demand, to which
I assert we can arrest our way out of this.

We have tried education since the days of Nancy Reagan and "Just say
no" and the D.A.R.E. program over 30 years ago; it should be clear at 
this point education is not the answer. Instead, we need to aggressively 
arrest and prosecute the users [to] the fullest extent
of the law to let the community know this will not be tolerated.

Holding their hands and treating them as 'victims' will only serve
to promote the behavior by removing accountability for their actions.

With aggressive prosecution and jail time for users, we can neutralize 
supply by killing demand and scaring the populace from ever trying drugs 
in the first place. Admittedly, this is not the quick fix, but
the quick fix has failed our society for over 30 years. This is the 
much-needed amputation to our gangrene appendage that will serve to
stop drug use in future generations by fear of jail time and social 
ostracization. However, as our leaders continue to bury their heads
in the sand, this epidemic will only get worse.


Turners Falls
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