America, The Drug War Has Failed: Where Is Your Outrage?


The “War on Drugs” has failed. It is not keeping us safe from the dangers that drugs pose, and it only serves to deepen our current economic crisis, increase violent organized crime, and endanger our national security. The evidence of the failure of our existing policy of prohibition is absolutely overwhelming, yet our political establishment still publicly calls for tougher laws, more enforcement, and more prisons. Why? Because you vote for those politicians, and they’re only telling you want they think you want to hear. But America, you have failed to educate yourself: you are ignorant— even willfully so, and you are dancing off the cliff’s edge.

How many of the estimated 40 million illegal drug users in this country will you pay taxes to lock up? Do you realize the magnitude of that task— that it would instantly bankrupt our nation to even seriously try? Even if you could, do you understand the statistical inevitability that in locking up that many people you would destroy the lives and families of numerous people you personally know— productive members of society, very likely in your own family? Do you even care that after 40 years of prohibition and having the highest per-capita incarceration rate in the world, mostly for non-violent drug offenses, we haven’t even made a scratch in the street availability of drugs— that in fact they are more available now than ever?

America, please tell me you’re smarter than that. I’m proud to be an American, and I’ve never used drugs that are currently illegal and have no interest in starting should that change. But my head’s not in the sand either— I know many people will do drugs whether they’re legal or not, and keeping them illegal has only created a dreadful black market and turned our friends and neighbors into criminals.

You don’t need to take my word for what I’m saying. Educate yourself. Listen to the growing number of former professional “drug warriors” who have come to the realization that we as a nation are on the wrong path. They have formed the rapidly-growing organization LEAP: Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. The facts are on their side. The arguments are on their side. The science is on their side. History is on their side.

(If this embedded video gives you trouble, watch it directly by clicking here.)

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“Let me tell you about the outcomes of legalization. The first outcome is that 1.6 million less people would have to be arrested here every year, which means something very important monetarily to everyone in this room, everyone in this state, which is in deficit spending like all the other states— everyone in this country— because this is what we spend every year to fight this war: $69 billion down the rathole. Useless!” — Norm Stamper, Police Chef (ret.) Seattle WA

“Drug legalization is not to be construed as an approach to our drug problem. Drug legalization is about our crime and violence problem. Once we legalize drugs we’ve got to then buckle down and start dealing with our drug problem. And that’s not going to be easy but it’s something we can do. 50% of adult cigarette smokers have quit in the last 10 years. That’s an amazing success story when you’re talking about the most addictive drug we know about: nicotine. How did we accomplish this wonderful success story? We educated: really got the word out there to people about how dangerous this substance was.” — Peter Christ, Police Captain (ret.) Towanda NY

If we really want to improve our urban neighborhoods, the single most important thing that we could do is end the War on Drugs.” — Mitch Lewis, former city auditor, Syracuse NY

America, where is your outrage? Why aren’t you on their side too? Why aren’t you shocked into action at this colossal, tragic, interminable waste? Why aren’t you calling and writing to your representatives and demanding an end to this madness?

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