Pubdate: Thu, 03 Jan 2002
Source: Eau Claire Leader-Telegram (WI)
Copyright: 2002 Eau Claire Press
Author: Chuck Beyer
Bookmark: (Terrorism)


A recent letter writer used the truly illogical argument that terrorism can 
be eliminated by "ratcheting up" the war on drugs.

It is prohibition that finances terrorism -- not drugs. It should be noted 
that terrorists are not opening liquor stores, pharmacies or corner 
groceries to finance terrorism. A rational analysis shows that drugs were 
not funding terrorism before Prohibition, and that today legal drugs do not 
finance terrorism.

Until voters can learn to apply logic to their arguments and laws, we may 
see more incidents such as 9-11 because prohibition is a license for 
terrorists to print money.

Furthermore, the United States now spends $40 billion a year to intercept 
at maximum 5 percent of illegal drugs. Also frightening is the fact that 
the U.S. imprisons 700 citizens per 100,000, compared with 50 in most of 
Europe and 115 in Canada, mostly for drug crimes. How much more money and 
time should be wasted on this crusade when there are real enemies in our midst.

Until now, people who did not use drugs could ignore the war being waged by 
the government against 10 percent of the population, because they do not 
use drugs.

But now that terrorism is in the spotlight, it is apparent that everyone 
can be a victim of prohibition.

Voters should ask politicians this question: "Do you support drug 
prohibition because it finances criminals at home or because it finances 
terrorists abroad?"

CHUCK BEYER, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
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