Pubdate: Thu, 12 Jan 2012
Source: Dallas Morning News (TX)
Copyright: 2012 Jerry Epstein and Howard Wooldridge
Authors: Jerry Epstein and Howard Wooldridge


Prohibition Is Extreme ...

Re: "Extremists hijack drug abuse debate, getting us nowhere - Listen 
to centrists on treatment, prevention, says Kevin Sabet," Sunday Points.

For decades, Sabet and his colleagues at the White House Office of 
National Drug Control Policy have been misinforming the public in 
defense of a radical drug policy. Alcohol Prohibition is the 
blueprint for today's extremist policy disasters.

Sabet praises National Drug Control Policy director R. Gil 
Kerlikowske for being sensible. In a July 2010 guest column in The 
Dallas Morning News, Kerlikowske justified the drug war because "23 
million suffer from substance abuse or dependency." Not mentioned was 
that 19 million of those abuse or are addicted to alcohol, and nearly 
all the rest have a previous alcohol problem. The word alcohol never 
appeared once.

Mothers Against Drug Violence is hosting the Texas Conference on Drug 
Policy this week in Dallas. My colleague William Martin, senior 
fellow for religion and public policy at Baker Institute for Public 
Policy at Rice Institute, and I will explain critical facts obscured 
from the public by Sabet and friends, the devastating consequences of 
modern prohibition for our children and how we can do much better.

Jerry Epstein, president, Drug Policy Forum of Texas, Houston

.. And Has Gotten Us Nowhere

Today the cartels and assorted criminals control the production and 
distribution of illegal drugs in America. Per federal studies, nearly 
a million of our teens handle retail sales, several of whom are shot 
dead every week. This after 40 years and a trillion dollars spent 
trying to make drug prohibition effective.

Speaking as a retired detective who worked the trenches of the drug 
war, I am bewildered that some, like Kevin Sabet, promote prohibition 
even today. He, like many politicians, cannot bring himself to say 
the three hardest words in English: I was wrong.

Will we ever be as wise as our grandparents were in 1933?

Howard Wooldridge, Dallas
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