Pubdate: Sun, 10 May 2015
Source: Chico Enterprise-Record (CA)
Copyright: 2015 Chico Enterprise-Record
Note: Letters from newspaper's circulation area receive publishing priority
Author: Garry Cooper


Let me ask readers a question.

Is it your intended goal that our current drug policy should actually 
discourage drug use or should it be used to build and maintain a very 
expensive police force and prison system?

After all, drug use by schoolchildren is at an all-time high, as are 
drug overdose deaths and people in prison for drugs, despite our 
trillion-dollar anti-drug efforts over the last six decades.

Don't you think that keeping an open mind on better ways to address 
drug use is a reasonable thing to do? Maybe separate the drug 
addicted and house them in a huge rehab facility converted from one 
of our jails with professional counselors instead of 
high-school-educated prison guards that know nothing about the 
subject. Maybe vastly expand after-school activities to occupy the 
youthful minds. Maybe accept that pot is the new alcohol and address 
it that way to destroy the black market behind it, which is estimated 
supplies nearly 60 percent of the gang and cartel profits.

Every police union and group, such as the California Police Chiefs 
Association, openly states in their bylaws that they will oppose any 
change to current drug policy whatsoever. Does that sound prudent? It 
does to them. They know over 50 percent of their budgets are due to 
the current drug war.

Steve Landeros' letter said I am a shill for the pot growers. No, I 
am a shill for our Constitution and against the failed drug war and 
the constitutional damages it causes.

- - Garry Cooper, Durham
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