Source: Canberra Times (Australia)
Pubdate: 31 Aug 1998
Author: Kirk Nechamkin


I WOULD just like to say that while offering addicts a legal supply of
heroin will not cure their addiction, it will eliminate most of the
violence associated with the drug. Heroin addiction is, for many addicts,
too strong to overcome. Addicts will often rob, sometimes kill, to feed
their addiction only to finance an expanding black market.

In the perfect world, we could cure every addict with the push of a button.
In the real word, only a fraction of people who undergo the most rigorous
of treatment programs actually kick the habit. We have to seriously
consider the cost to our society of the relative ineffectiveness of
drug-treatment programs.

Many say we have a moral obligation to help drug addicts. If so, it only
makes sense that such an obligation should be subordinate to our obligation
to innocent people whose lives and property are frequently harmed by
drug-related crime.

With no perfect solution in sight, we need to choose our priorities carefully.


Forest Hills, New York, USA

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