HTTP/1.0 200 OK Content-Type: text/html On Pins And Needles, 1 Of 5
Pubdate: Tue, 12 Nov 2002
Source: Vancouver Sun (CN BC)
Copyright: 2002 The Vancouver Sun
Author: John A. Gayder

[Vancouver Sun Editorial Introduction:
While many professionals endorse safe injection sites and clean needles for 
drug addicts, other counsellors think a combination of jail and treatment 
is the best answer]


After reading about Constable Al Arsenault's ardent desire to give drug 
addicts "the cure, not the poison," I was reminded of H.L. Mencken's 
observation that sometimes in a democracy people get the type of society 
they want -- nice and hard.

At times like this, I really miss the late Gil Puder of the Vancouver 
police department. He had a knack for logically explaining the proper and 
ethical role of the police in regards to the problems associated with drug 
use. He could clearly see that the "war on drugs" was really a war on 
people and that, although noble in its intent, it aggravated the very 
problems it sought to correct.

Gil's ideas had a great impact on myself and other officers. We have formed 
an organization called Law Enforcement against Prohibition (LEAP) to help 
continue Gil's vision of bringing common sense back into society's methods 
of dealing with the horrors of drug addiction. A copy of Gil's 1998 
presentation to the Fraser Institute can be read at It offers 
a refreshing alternative to the treadmill of discredited ideas being 
advocated by Constable Arsenault.

John A. Gayder

St. Catharines, Ont.
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