Pubdate: Tue, 07 Nov 2000
Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)
Copyright: 2000 Los Angeles Times
Contact:  Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles, CA 90053
Fax: (213) 237-7679
Author: William W. Read


* Re "U.S. Justices Halt Drug Roadblocks," Nov. 29: In its finding that
roadblocks used for catching people with illicit drugs violate the 4th
Amendment, the Supreme Court perhaps not only enunciated the sanctity of the
right of privacy but may have also inched our nation a bit away from the
sorely misguided war on drugs. The court took away one arbitrary tactic of
law enforcement that made Indianapolis (and other places using it) more like
Cold War Berlin than a city in a free democracy.

Americans must realize that some people will choose to become intoxicated
with drugs other than alcohol, and as long as there is this demand someone
will supply the substances. Unless drug users present harm to others, they
should be treated just as one whose drug of choice is alcohol. Education,
treatment for the afflicted who choose it and strict regulation are the only
means a society can have of "controlling" drug use. Until there is this
realization, the only thing standing between our children and drugs are
people who are willing to risk imprisonment and in many cases willing to
kill or risk being killed in order to reap the huge profits drug prohibition
makes possible. Would you hire such a person to baby-sit your child?

William W. Read, Pasadena
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