Pubdate: Mon, 23 Aug 1999
Source: Houston Chronicle (TX)
Copyright: 1999 Houston Chronicle
Page: 19A
Author: David Carter
Editors Note: The letter didn't have a title so I added this one from the


Americans aren't particularly interested in the specifics of Governor
Bush's past drug use or non-use.  His dissembling regarding trash-mouth
politics is an attempt to avoid discussing the real issue. Why do
politicians feel justified in claiming irrelevance of past mistakes with
drugs while hundreds of thousands of Americans - equally guilty of such
"irrelevant youthful indiscretions" - must live daily with destroyed lives,
jobs, and families thanks in large part to laws created by those same

Justice Department annual statistics bear out that at least 600,000
Americans are arrested every year for marijuana offenses alone. They remain
oblivious to the blatant hypocrisy of having escaped arrest for past crimes
while their fellow Americans must suffer harsh legal consequences.

Honest politicians would acknowledge that our domestic war on drugs has not
improved the nation's drug problems in the least, is inherently unjust, and
undermines faith in law enforcement and the Constitution. Bush might find
his nagging-question problem disappearing if he would be courageous enough
to face the truth, but the drug war seems too valuable a political tool for
him to abandon it now.

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