Pubdate: Sat, 24 Nov 2001
Source: Sanford Herald, The (NC)
Copyright: The Sanford Herald 2001
Author: Robert Sharpe
Note: Author is Program Officer of DRC-Lindesmith; not so identified in
source; no headline in source, headline supplied by MAP Editor
Bookmark: (Terrorism)
Bookmark: (Treatment)
Bookmark: (Heroin)


In its Nov. 15 editorial, "Another kind of terrorism," The Herald decried
the lack of victory in the war on drugs. Now more than ever it is
imperative that we rethink the failed drug war.

Afghanistan's brutal Taliban regime profits from the heroin trade because
of drug prohibition, not in spite of it. Attempts to limit supply while
demand remains constant only increase the profitability of drug
trafficking. Here in the U.S. the drug war distorts market forces to the
degree that an easily grown weed like marijuana is literally worth its
weight in gold. In South America the various armed factions tearing
Colombia apart are all financially dependent on the obscene profits created
by America's $50 billion war on consensual vices.

Afghan heroin is primarily consumed in Europe, a continent already
experimenting with public health alternatives to the drug war. Providing
chronic addicts with standardized doses in a treatment setting has been
shown to reduce drug-related disease, death and crime.

ROBERT SHARPE, Washington, D.C. 
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MAP posted-by: Jackl