Pubdate: Fri, 19 Dec 2008
Source: New York Times (NY)
Copyright: 2008 The New York Times Company
Author: Robert Newman
Note: Readers are invited to submit letters to OTHER METHODS OF DEALING WITH HEROIN USE

Re the proposal to report the number and location of heroin arrests
( " Increase in Heroin Use Leads to Proposed Laws, " Dec. 14): First,
the clear assumption here is that arrest is synonymous with guilt; in
our country, happily, that is not the case. More fundamentally, such
reporting would lead to fear directed at certain neighborhoods and
those who live there, while doing nothing about the problems of drug
trafficking and use.

Black markets are driven primarily by demand, and there is a need for
frank , and honest , discussion in schools and elsewhere about
the dangers of illicit drugs. It is also essential to make
confidential treatment services available promptly to everyone who
wants and needs help.

Dr. Robert Newman

New York

The writer is director of the Baron Edmond de Rothschild Chemical
Dependency Institute of the Beth Israel Medical Center.
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