Pubdate: Sat, 01 Nov 2008
Source: Edmonton Journal (CN AB)
Copyright: 2008 The Edmonton Journal
Author: Ellis Worthington


Re: "Premier to gangs: 'We're coming after you': Province uses federal funds
to hire more police officers, set up organized-crime units," The Journal,
Oct. 29.

The most effective way of cracking down on gangs is with a system of
legal taxation, regulation, and control of drugs, not more cops. Drug
prohibition is an $18-billion annual gift to organized crime and
wastes $5 billion every year, according to the auditor general.
Prohibition creates most of the dangers associated with drugs,
marginalizes vulnerable people, causes violence, increases public
disorder, causes property crime, endangers the police, causes
corruption, promotes disrespect for the rule of law, and clogs the
justice system.

Criminals trafficking drugs use violence to solve problems, unlike
legal businessmen. In the U.S., the murder rate skyrocketed during
alcohol prohibition and when Richard Nixon started the War on Drugs.
When prohibition ends, gangs will disintegrate and criminals will have
to get real jobs. Every time a drug dealer is arrested, a job opening
is created.

Prohibition is destroying our communities and killing people. Canada
has prohibited plants since 1908. We need a new strategy, after 100
years of the same old failure. Why doesn't the government have the
courage to make our streets safer by repealing prohibition?

Ellis Worthington

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