Pubdate: Tue, 12 Mar 2002
Source: Pensacola News Journal (FL)
Copyright: 2002 The Pensacola News Journal
Author: Mett Ausley, MD


The Feb. 24 article "Doctors who deal, not heal, targeted" tells us the 
unprecedented prosecution of Dr. James Graves for manslaughter is not an 
isolated occurrence, but coincides with similar actions against a number of 
doctors around the nation. Obviously, bureaucrats within the 
drug-enforcement apparatus have contrived a "drug sweep" against doctors 
for propaganda effect.

Intimidating doctors might appear to be the objective, but the real purpose 
is to distract public attention away from the larger issue of the failure 
of the drug war, to be narrowly refocused on prescription drug abuse. Here, 
history shows there is likely success, for which credit can be claimed.

Faced with rising public skepticism about the war on drugs and outcry over 
the mass incarceration of the non-white underclass, drug apparatchiks have 
sidestepped by staging sensational show trials of a few affluent white 
doctors. State medical boards could have addressed these cases with far 
less expense and fanfare.

The prescribing abuses of Dr. Graves and others pale beside the abuse of 
authority by narcotics functionaries. While claiming to act in the public 
interest, these feckless parasites are primarily concerned with protecting 
their public image, funding and power.

Mett Ausley, MD

Lake Waccamaw, N.C.
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