Pubdate: Wed, 25 Apr 2001
Source: Seattle Times (WA)
Copyright: 2001 The Seattle Times Company
Author: Ryan Murray


I am troubled and disturbed by the death of Veronica and Charity
Bowers in Peru. Why is the war on drugs a war on people? This incident
is a tragedy because the Bowers are clearly innocent. What if,
however, they had been trafficking drugs? Would that have been
justification for their death?

Until we in the United States are willing to give the death penalty to
the users of drugs, we cannot take the lives of the suppliers of
drugs. To kill the South Americans who manufacture drugs while
allowing the users to live is nothing more than a racial prejudice
against those of another land. Furthermore, drug policies should be
aimed at helping people, not hurting them. Success in the campaign
against drugs will arise from people understanding how drugs get in
the way of their goals, and choosing to not partake of them.

The tobacco and liquor cartels operate in countries all over the
world; how can we push such harmful drugs as these in other countries
and at the same time make such aggressive and violent actions against
the native cartels operating within other countries' borders?

- - Ryan Murray, Bellevue
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