Pubdate: Wed, 25 Apr 2001
Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)
Copyright: 2001 Los Angeles Times
Author: Anthony Lorenzo, Tampa, FL
Note: Editor provided title


To the editor:

In the wake of the missionary plane shooting in Peru, more than Peru's 
"shoot-down" policy needs to be evaluated.

The whole counterproductive, rights-infringing, corruption-producing, 
budget-busting, violence-mongering, freedom-hating, race-baiting, and 
lie-fueled war on drugs ought to be put on trial.

Seven-month-old Charity Bowers is not the first innocent child killed in 
the drug war, and she won't be the last as long as we continue to accept 
the myth that force and violence are the best way to address drug problems.

The fact that any innocents must die is outrageous, regardless of whether 
they are missionaries or not.  The war is hopeless.   We need to try 
something different.  We need to look at our European counterparts and see 
what is working in other countries.  Amsterdam statistics reflect lower 
drug abuse in the 12+ age brackets.  The average age of drug addicts there 
is in the 30's.  HIV cases amongst IV drug users are a third what they are 
here.  Drug related homicides are lower.  It is about time we wake up and 
realize we must choose:  to be free or to be drug-free.

Anthony Lorenzo
Tampa, FL
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