Pubdate: Wed, 14 May 2003
Source: Goldstream Gazette (CN BC)
Copyright: 2003 Goldstream Gazette
Author:  Alan Randell


Re "Police seize drug-bust booty" in the May 7 edition.

Another day, another media piece designed to make us despise and/or fear 
those who use or sell certain drugs. As usual, no opposing views are permitted.

Our drug laws make no sense whatsoever. Not only are they an affront to the 
constitution, not only do they send crime rates into the stratosphere, not 
only do they hurt users rather than help them, they fail the test of logic. 
If drugs are banned because they are harmful, why don't we ban tobacco and 

Drug prohibition began at the beginning of the 20th Century as a means of 
persecuting blacks (marijuana), Mexicans (marijuana) and Chinese (opium), 
but today the cops are happy to make use of this evil law to harass and 
control all those whose skin colour and/or lifestyle offends them.

These laws are nothing less than a state-sanctioned, Hitler-like pogrom 
designed to divert our attention from more important issues by ruining the 
lives of the innocent few who happen to use or sell certain drugs.

How did the politicians win our approval, or at least our acceptance, of 
such a manifestly evil crusade? Because the media support it.

First, you immerse us in a torrent of "objective" accounts of the mayhem 
without allowing the victims' stories to be told; gradually we are 
persuaded "they only have themselves to blame."

Second, you never miss an opportunity to allow those who profit from the 
drug laws (cops, drug experts, prosecutors, politicians, etc.) to tell 
their stories while allowing only the occasional op-ed or letter from those 
who oppose the law. Was there ever a greater gift to the rich and powerful 
elite of the modern nation state in their never-ending campaign to quash 
the freedoms of its citizens than the mass media?

I don't think so. Abraham Lincoln was mistaken. You don't have to fool all 
the people all the time in order to oppress the people. All that's required 
is for the majority to be fooled all the time, and sadly, once you have the 
media behind you, that task is child's play.

Why do the media support a brutal government pogrom like our drug laws? I 
can only surmise that tragedy, suffering and war sell more newspapers and 
lead to higher TV ratings than happiness, contentment and peace.

It is long past time that newspapers such as yours begin to serve the 
public instead of our gutless politicians and venal drug cops - even if it 
means you sell fewer issues.

- -Alan Randell

- ---
MAP posted-by: Beth