Pubdate: Wed, 18 Mar 2009
Source: Athens Banner-Herald (GA)
Copyright: 2009 Athens Newspapers Inc
Author: Jeffrey E. Moss


A March 13 Banner-Herald story, "Drug cartel linked to 
warehouse/Hefty load of marijuana stashed in Athens," is a prime 
example of our tax dollars being wasted on this nation's expensive 
and ineffective war on drugs. According to the story, more than 1,200 
pounds of marijuana were transferred from a tractor-trailer truck 
from McAllen, Texas, into a cargo van in Athens on Feb. 20.

On that same day, I witnessed at least four trucks transferring an 
equally intoxicating substance into legal establishments in downtown 
Athens in broad daylight. The trucks unloading in downtown were not 
even unmarked. They carried the logos of any number of beer companies.

The average cost to prosecute a nonviolent drug offense is $15,000. 
The average annual cost to incarcerate an adult offender is about 
$22,000. Why not use that money to fund the rehabilitation and 
prevention that have been proven to be more effective than 
incarceration for drug offenders?

On what level does it make sense to ban the manufacture and sale of 
marijuana while at the same time allowing the manufacture and sale of 
alcohol and cigarettes?

The 18th Amendment to the Constitution, prohibiting the manufacture 
and consumption of alcohol, spawned one of the deadliest periods of 
organized crime in our nation's history. I believe the war on drugs 
is equally egregious.

Jeffrey E. Moss

- ---
MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom