Pubdate: Fri, 25 Mar 2016
Source: Dayton Daily News (OH)
Copyright: 2016 Dayton Daily News
Author: Ron Rollins


A report in Harper's magazine is getting attention for a theory on 
how the so-called war on drugs began during the Nixon administration.

Reporter Dan Baum looks at the origins of the policy, and offers a 
bizarre quote fromJohn Erlichman, Nixon's domestic policy adviser. 
Harper's editor, Ellen Rosenbush, writes that Erlichman told Baum the 
Nixon team cooked up the war on drugs to discredit groups who 
disagreed with it - African-Americans and young protestors:

"'Did we know we were lying about the drugs?' Ehrlichman told Baum in 
1994. 'Of course we did.' The Nixon White House thought of the 
antiwar left and black people as enemies. 'But by getting the public 
to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin, and 
then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities.'"

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