Pubdate: Wed, 13 May 2015
Source: Bangor Daily News (ME)
Copyright: 2015 Bangor Daily News Inc.
Author: Robert Sharpe


Regarding Scott Gagnon's May 7 BDN blog post, the drug war is a cure 
worse than the disease. Children of inmates are at risk of 
educational failure, joblessness, addiction and delinquency. Not only 
do the children lose out, but society as a whole does, too.

Incarcerating nonviolent drug offenders alongside hardened criminals 
is the equivalent of providing them with a taxpayer-funded education 
in criminal behavior. Prisons transmit violent habits rather than reduce them.

Nonviolent drug offenders are eventually released, with dismal job 
prospects because of criminal records. Turning drug users into 
unemployable ex-cons is a senseless waste of tax dollars.

It's time to declare peace in the failed drug war and begin treating 
all substance abuse, legal or otherwise, as the public health problem 
it is. Destroying the futures and families of citizens who make 
unhealthy choices doesn't benefit anyone. Drug abuse is bad, but the 
drug war is worse.

Robert Sharpe, MPA

Policy Analyst

Common Sense for Drug Policy

Washington, D.C.
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