Pubdate: Tue, 12 Jan 1999
Source: Age, The (Australia)
Section: Page: A10
Copyright: 1999 David Syme & Co Ltd 
Author: Ed Castenmiller, Strathmore


Until I read the story "The Life and Death of Ben: how our drug laws have
killed him" (The Age, 9/1), I was not sure that legalising hard drugs was
such a good idea; I am now convinced that it is the only way to go.

I fear, however, that because it is indeed that simple our
decision-makers might not be able to grasp it, and that this mother's
wish will not be answered for a while.

No expert's opinion or a number of well-intended and well-researched
reports managed to do what this ordinary mother did: tell the common
person of the drug problem and its simple solution.

To protect our youth and future, drugs should come out of the criminal
sphere and be legalised. In desperation you would almost wish that our
politicians were put through an ordeal like this family experienced.
just to make them see the light.

Even if they are not swayed by the human misery of it all, at least
the opportunity to save all this money should persuade them and make
them act in haste.

I am very grateful to Mary Lou Palmer for sharing this very sad
experience with us; it might be a small consolation that by telling
her story she has convinced at least one other parent of the only way
to go is with drugs! I am also appreciative that The Age gave this
story front-page cover.


- ---
MAP posted-by: Rich O'Grady