Pubdate: Sun, 30 Jul 2000
Source: Chicago Sun-Times (IL)
Copyright: 2000 The Sun-Times Co.
Contact:  401 N. Wabash, Chicago IL 60611
Author: Rich Silverman


It was heartening to read the editorial "Dialogue can spur new look at
drugs" [July 19]. More and more people across the country are
realizing the extent of damages to our civil liberties and society
that the so-called war on drugs has caused. In order to call further
attention to this topic, and to spur the national debate we so
desperately need, it is important for outlets like yours to speak up
on this issue.

People are afraid to broach this difficult topic, mired as it is in
politics, race and big business. If we can show people that there is
no reason to be afraid--no reason to fear changes to the devastating
effect that drug laws have had on our country (search and seizure,
"driving while black," mandatory minimum sentencing, etc.)--then the
sensible regulation of drugs can begin, and with it, the healing of
our damaged society.

Rich Silverman,
Lake View
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