Pubdate: Sun, 16 Dec 2001
Source: Gazette, The (CO)
Copyright: 2001 The Gazette
Author: David A. Lange


On one hand, I am heartened by the clear, rational thinking of a public 
official, but on the other hand I am saddened that there are so few 
officials like him ("Sheriff scoffs at drug war", The Gazette, Dec. 10, 
2001). Sheriff Bill Masters is 100 percent correct when he says the war on 
drugs is wasteful. What he alludes to, but doesn't say in the report, is 
that drug abuse is an issue of personal responsibility and character. I've 
no doubt that illegal (by government fiat) drugs are available for sale 
within 10 minutes from any point in Colorado Springs, so what keeps the 
city's population from becoming a mass of hard-core abusers? Something that 
can't be mandated by a bureaucrat - personal responsibility and character.

When U.S. Attorney John Suthers speaks of looking into the eyes of a mother 
whose daughter has recently overdosed on drugs, no one could help but feel 
pity; another young life wasted. But who is ultimately responsible for that 
death? Was this child forcibly restrained and administered drugs? As 
difficult as it may be for parents to accept, children also have a 
responsibility to stay away from dangerous situations and substances. I 
doubt this child had never heard of the dangers of drugs, yet she chose to 
ignore those warnings and paid a dear price.

What it all boils down to is this: Stop demanding that the government do 
for you what you should be doing for yourself. Take responsibility for your 
own actions and don't run to Uncle Sam demanding protection from something 
that is easily remedied by saying no.

David A. Lange, Colorado Springs
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