Pubdate: Sun, 08 Aug 1999
Date: 08/08/1999
Source: Columbian, The (WA)
Author: Scott Dykstra

Dear Editor,

Recently, I've been reading reports about the United States Government
and how it is advocating another injection of tax dollars to the
Columbian government for anti-drug war efforts.

Government speak:  "We need more cops.  We need to spend more money.
Bigger bureaucracy.  Build more prisons.  Send more foreign aid to
here or there. Create harsher drug laws.  Sentence people longer so
it'll send a message to the "children".  Does uncle sam really care
about the children?

When are Americans to wake up?  We "allow" the federal government to
spend in excess of $18 billion dollars a year fighting a war against
inanimate objects. A war declared by our government on an object or
objects that cannot by any definition, think on their own behalf, have
no intelligence or decision making abilities.

To further scrutinize, the War on Drugs isn't a war on drugs at all.
It's a money making buisness.  A 30 years ago, President Nixon
declared war against marihuana in the 1970's.  President Reagan hopped
on board and created the Drug Abuse Act in 1988 which doubled
manditory minimums, increased spending and took away even more rights
from the American people. The results in this war are not impressive
by any measure.

Prisons are exploding.  Hard drugs are as readily available on the
street corner to any child as ever before.  Now retired general Barry
McCaffrey is propagandizing Columbia is in a "desperate" crisis, that
we should jump into the civil war to curb importation of drugs into
America.  Vietnam? Smells akin to it.

Lastly, I have two questions.  General Barry McCaffrey and the D.E.A.
are policy enforcers.  As I last checked, they are not authorized to
practice medicine.  Is it not the educated Harvard graduate physician
that retains the expertise on the "authority" to which medical
marihuana/patient issue resides?    In addition, numerous physician
assocations support medical cannabis, including the American Medical
Association. It is not federal law.  It is Constitutionally guaranteed
California state law, of the people, for the people, by the people,
voted in favor by 56% of the people.

How much money and resources are we, as nation, in the name on the War
on Drugs, going to allow before we no longer have any freedoms, are
left empty handed with the same or worse situation than we have now?
End prohibition. Regulate drugs. It's the only way to guarantee
Constitutional freedoms and the only way to keep drugs out of hands of

Scott Dykstra