Pubdate: Mon, 25 Sep 2000
Date: 09/25/2000
Source: Modesto Bee, The (CA)
Author: Mary Menz

The soul-searching that followed the tragic police killing of Alberto
Sepulveda ignored some important points.

We hear that the real target was the boy's father. Are we to assume it
would have been no crime if Moises Sepulveda had taken the police
blast? Why would that not have been an execution-style slaying, as we
hear drug people do?

The bigger issue is the war on drugs, long used to justify human
rights abuses that we hear of only when some erroneously targeted
family sues.

We have thrown good money after bad for decades, with the drug
epidemic only worsening. Surely, the drug lords' worst nightmare would
be decriminalizing their wares. If drugs could be bought at the
pharmacy, with a pharmacist trying to talk you out of them, the
inflated prices would drop along with gangland revenues; there would
be no need for the violence surrounding the drug culture, and money
now wasted on an ineffective war could go toward making rehabilitation
available to all, not just the few fortunate enough to have medical

One might think that the intransigence with which our government
refuses to look at alternatives to this drug war indicates another
agenda that really has nothing to do with discouraging use of these

Modesto, Sept. 21