Pubdate: Sun, 24 Jan 2016
Source: New Haven Register (CT)
Copyright: 2016 New Haven Register
Author: Jerry Cunningham


I must be getting old. I actually found myself sympathetic to the 
message Sean Penn was trying to deliver on CBS. Let me explain. Two 
days before the Sean Penn interview aired, there was a story in the 
local paper of yet another young man dying from a heroin overdose. If 
Sean Penn's point was that if we want to stop the death and 
destruction caused by drugs, the war on drugs must be fought on two 
fronts, I wholehearted agree.

I think the government must continue efforts to stop the drug trade 
at the source level, and also continue to pursue the illegal drug 
trade, down to the local level. ("Retail" dope sales outside a local 
convenience store, rival inside sales, making me wonder if addressing 
the retail drug trade is a local priority.)

Do you remember "Just Say No to Drugs?" The front on the war on drugs 
that has been abandoned has been the attempt to stop consumption, 
which I think was Sean Penn's point. Here in Stratford, the D.A.R.E. 
program is no longer offered, and all throughout the United States, 
lives are being lost to heroin, and little seems to be done to stop 
it. Just think about how many ads you have seen on TV trying to 
discourage teenage smoking, and compare that to how many ads you have 
seen discouraging drugs. It is not even close.

So rather than abandoning the war on drugs, because it is difficult, 
we must once again try to discourage the demand for drugs, even as we 
stop the flow of poison to our children. Letting the government sell 
heroin is just another form of surrender in the War on Drugs, and 
surrender in any form will result in the death of our young people, 
our communities, and ultimately, our nation.

- - Jerry Cunningham

- ---
MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom