Pubdate: Fri, 07 Sep 2001
Source: Victoria Times-Colonist (CN BC)
Copyright: 2001 Hollinger Canadian Newspapers
Author: Chuck Beyer
Bookmark: (Treatment)


The trial of drug addict Scott Williams for pointing a gun at Colleen 
Jennerich's daughter appears to be over now that he has been found guilty 
and will be sentenced to four or more years ("Mother doesn't buy bandit's 
drug defence," Sept. 1).

But without a careful examination of the situation society will learn 
nothing and pay dearly.

Trials in various European countries have proven that use of prescription 
heroin and cocaine for addicts has cut crimes like this dramatically.

In addition, AIDS and hepatitis transmission have been brought under 
control and addicts have gone back to performing productive work.

In short, by issuing these prescriptions, citizens no longer are robbed by 

Sentencing Williams to four years in prison will cost society about 
$200,000. A prescription would have cost considerably less.

When citizens experience violence as the result of drug addiction they 
should also hold politicians to account, because it is their inaction that 
represents "the invisible hand" that guides desperate addicts.

Since Canadian politicians are perfectly aware of the success of these 
trials in Europe, they are, if not co-conspirators, at least vicariously 
liable for these violent crimes. They should also be brought to trial.

Chuck Beyer,

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