Pubdate: 10 Mar 1999
Source: Sacramento Bee (CA)
Copyright: 1999 The Sacramento Bee
Contact:  P.O.Box 15779, Sacramento, CA 95852


Re "Other issues nettle Davis," Feb. 21: Dan Walters wants the governor and
Legislature to spend more tax dollars to "build more prisons or run the
risk of being forced to release felons in a few years." The problem is not
too few prisons. The problem is our drug laws. Violent felons are being
released to make room for nonviolent drug users.

Drug criminalization and lengthy prison sentences for drug violations have
expanded our prisons, restricted our liberties, promoted corruption in law
enforcement, ruined lives, killed innocents and expanded tax dollars for
prisons at the expense of education, transportation, health care, safety,
child care and all legitimate government services.

All this could be corrected if "drugs" were decriminalized and dealt with
and controlled legally such as alcohol and tobacco. That would not please
the prison guards union, but it would ease a horrific burden on all of us.

Gary R. Davis, M.D.
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