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January 20, 2010
Cross-border drug war continues to escalate

A policeman at the U.S.-Mexico border in Tijuana. Photo: Flickr user Nathan Gibbs

President Obama visited Mexico early in his term, and the U.S. has been active in funding the Mexican authorities in their war on drugs.

Recently, violent conflict between drug cartels and the Mexican government has been on the upswing. And today, 23 people died in a fight between rival gangs in a Mexican prison.

Many experts believe that the American appetite for illicit drugs is fueling the drug wars in Mexico.

Is the U.S. doing enough to crack down on illegal domestic drug use?

Tell us what you think in the comments section below. Please be respectful and on-point. Malicious or offensive comments will be deleted, and repeat offenders will be banned.

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Comments

59 comments

#59

Whether or not any of these ‘at present illegal’ substances are dangerous or addictive is not in contention. Some clearly are and others, such as marijuana, or even magic mushrooms, are clearly not. At present we have a bigger ‘prohibition problem’ than we do a ‘drug problem’ This is actually a re-run of the 1920s and early 1930s –Alcohol was rightly perceived to be addictive and dangerous, so they banned it. The result was so catastrophic, that the same people who were behind it’s prohibition soon took to the streets to get it legalized/regulated again.

No amount of money, police powers, weaponry, wishful thinking or pseudo-science will make our streets safer; only an end to prohibition can do that. How much longer are you willing to foolishly risk your own survival by continuing to ignore the obvious, historically confirmed solution?

If you support prohibition then you’ve helped trigger the worst crime wave in history.

If you support prohibition you’ve a helped create a black market with massive incentives to hook both adults and children alike.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped to make these dangerous substances available in schools and prisons.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped raise gang warfare to a level not seen since the days of alcohol bootlegging.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped create the prison-for-profit synergy with drug lords.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped remove many important civil liberties from those citizens you falsely claim to represent.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped put previously unknown and contaminated drugs on the streets.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped to escalate Theft, Muggings and Burglaries.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped to divert scarce law-enforcement resources away from protecting your fellow citizens from the ever escalating violence against their person or property.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped overcrowd the courts and prisons, thus making it increasingly impossible to curtail the people who are hurting and terrorizing others.

If you support prohibition you’ve helped evolve local gangs into transnational enterprises with intricate power structures that reach into every corner of society, controlling vast swaths of territory with significant social and military resources at their disposal.

#58

“The only person who should have a say, in what I put into my body, is me.”

Well said. Short and to the point.

Drug fighters and illegalizers are just like rapists because they use force in order control the bodies of their victims. They tell their victims to submit or be severly punished. And, to add insult to injury, they claim that their victims really want to be physically violated and benefit from being forced against their will.

Some of these violent thugs, like some in this discussion, want to kill all their victims who dare to resist.

The good news, as evidenced in this discussion, is that more and more people can see this injustice and are willing to stand up to these violent predators.

#57

The only person who should have a say, in what I put into my body, is me. I will ask my doctor for advice, but I will not surrender control of my body to anyone else. If I am to live as a free man then surely I must have this inalienable right.

#56

Attention: jo, keith cornelison, Pirl Harbour, CarlM

“…results of drug money: scarred arms, beaten drug prostitutes, beheaded folkes in Mexico, hungry children.”

Nonsense. They are the result of your unjust wars against your fellow humans who do not pass your arbitrary test of purity.

“Americans are enornous users of the product.”

For several hundred million human beings, drugs are a necessity like food and shelter.

“Until the U.S. cracks down effectively on dealers and distributors, Mexico will continue to bear the burden.”

Nonsense. You do not want to imprison and execute doctors, nurses, pharmacists, the armies of drug salespersons who push Big Pharma drugs or the rich white people who control them. You only want to jail and execute unlicensed dealers and distributors. Just like Nazi criminals, you want to treat ordinary people like they are worse than murderers just because their papers are not in order. Shame on you. Sic Semper Tyrannus

“Countless people are being killed, innocent bystanders and lives ruined on both sides of the border because of their insatiable need to feel good.”

Nonsense. People are being killed and lives ruined by the violence of your drug war. The problem is your insatiable need to use violence (the law) against peaceful human beings.

“Instead of putting a person in a small box for 20 years to be watch over by another person, start using a hang mans rope.”

I have a better idea. You should be given a taste of your own medicine. That would cure you of your violence, ignorance, and inhumanity. By the way, the policy of “zero-tolerance” is a Nazi policy. Please refer to post # 48.

“President Obama must decide if the drug Dons are political terrorists or simply the nouveau riche.”

The “drug Dons” are the rich white people who control the government-licensed drug cartel (Big Pharma). They view people like yourself as “useful idiots”

Rick Freedom_First at verizon.net

#55

Prohibition makes all aspects of substances use and abuse far worse for all of us.

Allow me to show you some quotes and testimony from the Senate Hearings on Alcohol Prohibition from April 1926:

The following are from WALTER E. EDGE’s testimony, a Senator from New Jersey:

“Any law that brings in its wake such wide corruption in the public service, increased alcoholic insanity, and deaths, increased arrests for drunkenness, home barrooms, and development among young boys and young women of the use of the flask never heard of before prohibition can not be successfully defended.”

“I unhesitatingly contend that those who recognize existing evils and sincerely endeavor to correct them are contributing more toward temperance than those who stubbornly refuse to admit the facts.”

“The opposition always proceeds on the theory that give them time and they will stop the habit of indulging in intoxicating beverages. This can not be accomplished. We should recognize our problem is not to persist in the impossible, but to recognize a situation and bring about common-sense temperance through reason.”

“This is not a campaign to bring back intoxicating liquor, as is so often claimed by the fanatical dry. Intoxicating liquor is with us to-day and practically as accessible as it ever was. The difference mainly because of its illegality, is its greater destructive power, as evidenced on every hand. The sincere advocates of prohibition welcome efforts for real temperance rather than a continuation of the present bluff.”

http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/HISTORY/e1920/senj1926/walteredge.htm

#54

Drugs are product; Americans are enornous users of the product. Madison Avenue AD men, government tv, radio, public health messages, churches, hospitals, schools must show the results of drug money: scarred arms, beaten drug prostitutes, beheaded folkes in Mexico, hungry children. The economic pyramid has the majority of illegal users at the bottom becoming poorer; the top of the pyramid becomes more wealthy; the wealthy drug rulers often protect their beloveds from the product. Illicit drugs should be treated like H1NI a public health hazard, a economic threat to families, a domestic violence incendiary, criminal activity, & an undermining of homeland security through drug murders on all our borders & planes bringing in drugs from Afganistan, South America, Canada.
It’s not a light issue or funny (movies, tv), it deadly serious. If we think we’re mostly protected, the highways have drug users freely wheeling multi-ton vehicles. There are more drug users than DWI on our roads.

#53

Some years back, when I was living in New Mexico, I saw a remark by the Govenor of Sonora. he said, accurately, that “Mexico does not have a drug problem..Mexico has the UNITED STATES’ drug problem. Mexicans cannot afford the prices that make to trade so profitable. Until the U.S. cracks down effectively on dealers and distributors, Mexico will continue to bear the burden.” He was and is right..

#52

Legalize certain drugs, Marijuana, start there. Then it will become a legal industry in Mexico and elsewhere. It appears that the USA’s demand is too powerful and its citizens too weak to understand the implications of their use of MJ. Countless people are being killed, innocent bystanders and lives ruined on both sides of the border because of their insatiable need to “feel good.” Like alcohol and tobacco use and abuse a new industries will be created to counteract the misuse of the drug. Medical MJ would need to be controlled separately because once it becomes legal it will be adulterated and weakened to make more profit out of it. Tax it heavily like tobacco and then everyone will be happy except for the consumer who will be paying through the nose to “feel good.”

Feeling good the great American past time, that has people fat, stupid and happy, will be accessible to everyone and we can all sit glassy-eyed watching the country further circle down the drain with a “What, me worry?”

#51

Instead of putting a person in a small box for 20 years to be watch over by another person, start using a hang mans rope. Many progressive countries put a stop to their problem by reduceing the drug trade to the point if you deal in drugs once and get caught you do not live long enough to get caught twice. Singapore does not have that problem once they put into that policy.

#50

Until President Obama accepts the (1) drug cartels are a political force whose end goal is to establish a narco-state that is friendly to doing “business” (Cuba in the 1950’s), (2) the Drug Dealers Liberation Front have a military arm used to augment their political goals, (3) they have the money to engage in a protracted political struggle, (4) they practice supply side economics and have market pricing power, and (5) like the tobacco industry, have no concern for the social and individual havoc they wreck, he is doomed to the corosive effect of half-measures (as his Afgan. poppy program falters). He has two choices: He can fight the war as a war because it is a war, or he can work to condition peoples perception to find some “reason” to accept the destruction the cartels are and will continue to inflict on American society. Like the Mexican Oligarchy President Obama must decide if the drug Dons are political terrorists or simply the nouveau riche.

#49

the user gets a felony,the dealer gets away .the felon is no longer alowed get ajob. the dealer gets away. who is the winner the dealer, the felon. or china by way of america’s jobs.except for prisons, courts, lawers ….

#48

“The US is not doing enough to stop the drug use. Strong penalties should be adopted (like Syngapore) for the traffickers (hanging) and users (caning) without possibility of parole.”

Damian Terpin — I have a better idea:

There is an honorable way to win the war on unlicensed drug owners and all other wars against human freedom. Every person who supports this unjust war should be required to meet on the field of honor with a defender of freedom. Every person who wants to criminalize fundamental human rights such as the right of adults to choose their own food, drink, and medicine, should be required to meet, one on one, with someone who defends the Constitutional and universal principle of individual freedom and personal responsibility.

This simple requirement will cause all drug fighters, gun grabbers, and other illegalizers, to disappear. It would be like turning on a light in a dark room and watching the cockroaches run for cover. Why? Because fascist thugs are not honorable people. Their idea of a fair fight is to first disarm their victim and then employ a dozen government goons to point a dozen guns at his head.

Rick Freedom_First at verizon.net

#47

“The people responsable for the drug wars are the people who use drugs.”

richard — So, if a heavily armed gang attacks you, throws you to the ground, pushes your face into the pavement, point a dozen guns at your head, and blows your head off if you resist, just because they did not approve of what you ate for breakfast, you would conclude that you were responsible for that violence?

You believe that it was the beer drinkers, not the alcohol fighters and illegalizers, who were responsible for the war on alcohol consumers, producers, and dealers?

In Nazi Germany, you blame the Jews for the government war on Jews?

You got it backwards.

Rick Freedom_First at verizon.net

#46

“Cocaine should be criminalized just as tough as Crack.”

Trusayin — You have been mis-informed about drugs in general and cocaine in particular.

The major drugs in the world — alcohol, cocaine, opiates, and cannabis — are valuable medicines which have served mankind for hundreds of years. These naturally produced medicines are also the safest drugs. Preparations of coca, opium, cannabis, and alcohol have been safely produced and consumed for centuries. These much-valued herbal medicines also have religious, ceremonial, and recreational uses. They belong in every home and medicine kit unless the property owner chooses otherwise.

Now, if you want to believe that cocaine or some other plant medicine is an evil substances that destroys all those who possess them unless they are protected by a magic piece of paper called a “license” or “prescription”, that is your choice. You are free to believe any voodoo nonsense that you want. But, you don’t have the right to murder, assaullt, rob, and arrest all those who do not share your pagan religion. Likewise, you don’t have the right to authorize others to commit these crimes in the name of some man-made law. Justice is above all man-made laws. Freedom_First@verizon.net

#45

I wish the U.S. would do less to crack down on illegal domestic drug use. Much less. Nothing, to be exact. Violence and corruption exploded during Prohibition, and the same thing happened after Nixon declared war on drugs. I say we not only admit defeat, but that we admit that we were fighting the wrong war in the first place.
Of course, powerful forces are in favor of keeping drugs illegal. The U.S. intelligence agencies relied on income from the inflated price of illegal drugs to fight communism, initially selling heroin through an alliance with the Mafia (which Mussolini crushed but which we enthusiastically resurrected after we liberated Sicily) and later selling cocaine in the 1980s. The banks and large corporations also love the massive amounts of money invested in them by drug lords, ca. $700 billion annually.
The government is steeped in corruption from drug profits. In 1982, Reagan declared war on marijuana. It soon became nearly impossible to find. The next year, the crack epidemic began. Coincidence? Impossible. The anticommunists who were horrified that the Sandinistas of Nicaragua might provide an example of a humane communist regime needed to clear the field to introduce the more habit-forming and more profitable cocaine, which they controlled. (They never were very good at infiltrating the hippie-controlled, and much less violence-prone, marijuana market.)
Now, they are flooding Europe with heroin from poppies grown in Afghanistan. The big mistake the Taliban made was nearly eliminating poppy growing in Afghanistan. Now that the U.S. is there, poppies are everywhere. Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s brother, Ahmed Wali Karzai, is one of the biggest opium traffickers there. We are using the new narco-republic of Kosovo, our own creation, to channel the heroin into Europe.
If drugs were legalized, they would become much less profitable. Marijuana is a hearty weed that easily grows anywhere; it is expensive only because it is illegal. Without this source of income that stays hidden because it is illegal, the U.S. spy agencies would have far less money for black ops and far less ability to create government policy. We should call the War on Drugs what it is: a war against the peoples of the world by a secretive, criminal, lying elite.
By the way, anyone who says that marijuana is a dangerous drug is either a liar or is allowing himself or herself to be tragically deceived.

#44

Legalization is the only strategy that will stop the drug wars. It has a successful history where it has been adopted. This 100 year-old strategy of legislative prohibition has produced gang wealth whenever it has been adopted. The legalization of alcohol is the only thing that ended the flow of bootlegged booze. Legalization of drugs will have the same result. Then initiate a system of supervised distribution.

#43

After reading all the posts#25 Bill Harris makes the most sense.I am a recovering alcoholic.I used synthetic drugs experimentally knowing i had an alcohol problem i didn’t want to add to my problems.Some of you think addicts should be punished and fined severely,WRONG!The govt needs to legalize every drug because an addict has to realize and accept the problem before he or she can address the problem.The govt won’t legalize won’t legalize drugs because there is so much at stake 1.job security,private sector,the local,state and federal police agencies will be out of jobs 2.The govt won’t be making any profit to pay for the big guns it makes to sell to these govts or drug dealers 3.Pharmaceutical companies won’t be able to make profits from people like my mother who is on every medication you see on commercials these days and every one of those Rx drugs have opiates in it’s ingredients,if the U.S.govt doesn’t control this,how is it going to pay for the big guns it makes every day.Think about it..

#42

All drugs should be legalized to:
1. Stop the flow of money to terrorists
2. Reduce the power of gangs (organized crime).
3. Reduce the Billions of dollars in taxes spent each year on a war that can never be won.
4. Reduce the burden on our prisons, OWNA the criminal education and networking system.
5. Stop the flow of arms to Mexico
6. Sell the drugs through government run outlets, like Utah does with alcohol, and use the money to educate and treat addicts.
7. Reduce the tyranny imposed on farmers by organized crime.
8. Reduce the cost to business for drug testing
9. Eliminate the double standard imposed on employees, you can keep your job if you’re an alcoholic but not if smoked a little marijuana 3 weeks ago. Make it about what’s important to business’s PERFORMANCE!
10. How have we become a drug based society? Look as close as your nearest doctor, they are happy to give you a drug for any ailment.
Only pressure from society and concern for health will ever stop people from using drugs, look at the number of addicts who have stopped using tobacco in recent years.

#41

Drugs need to be legalized in america.Tax it,sell it to the users,setup vending machines for heroin users so they don’t share needles,cocine should be legalized as well.We started the war on drugs in columbia not because the citizens of U.S. were in danger but because the govt can sell it to the pharmaceutical companies and make more money.The same goes for controlling the heroin in Afghanistan we are there to extract the heroin from Afghanistan for our own financial interests,let’s not be naive.It makes me furious that the govt thinks we are stupid.We are not in these countries because the govt is keeping us safe,wake up people,the govt is deceiving us one more time.

#40

Decriminalizing marijuana alone is not the answer. Cocaine is what is really fueling the illicit drug economy. Cocaine should be criminalized just as tough as Crack. With more of the Majority of the poulation getting arrested and doing long prison terms ie.,Rockerfeller Drug Laws, the Majority of the population will begin to reconsider. The minority of the population will also feel the effects that they have always unjustly felt because you need Cocaine to make Crack.

#39

Decriminalize marijuana at least. Overall it’s use is much less destructive than cigarettes. That step should also include clearing the prison industry of the inmates convicted of marijuana usage and production. That will save a lot of government expenses. The use of marijuana by the richer to get richer is a basic corruption of the high and mighty Rich of our societies.

#38

I beleive the current efforts in the united states, to stop the demand, have gone too far. They are excessive, and as the guest mentioned tonight human rights issues are a concern and i agree. Already the war on drugs was used as a pretext for forfeiture which i believe weakens the constitution, so thus far the american population at large has lost some measure of legal protection and yet it is a major crop in california. Definitely in the case of marijuana, this should be legalized, if people could buy a packet of seeds and grow their own and sell it at the farmers market or just smoke what they grow, the mexican cartels would be out of the picture and would instanly lose all those profits, maybe we wouldnt need so many police and prison space and thus reduce those budgets perhaps for more savings

#37

The ONLY answer to the drug nonsense is to legalixze all of them, GROW them here, sell them cheaply (cheaper?) through some sort of well organized system so that all the profits go to our taxes, pay for health care, reduce our taxes as well as give a hefty percentage to education, with a major emphasis on teaching in the early grades (teach in civics and gym classes the ups and downs of drug useage),

Designate places for un-healable addicts to live in EVERY city, using the model that used to be done for polio victims or the asylums and psychiatric centers.

In this way we stop the cartels in their tracks (at least for our country!), stop spending so much on arrests, raids, jails, courts, etc. develope more control systems and put that money into any number of other places like creating the jobs for the farmers, distributors and sellers of the stuff (I do NOT approve or use drugs other than those that keep me alive which my doctor authorises me to take- I am 69 years old!)
WHY fight what Americans (perhaps that title is too honorable for the drug users?) CITIZENS seem to want which is to have drugs to use, just work much harder on the education of why they shouldn’t and provide minimal surviving opportunities for the addicts (perhaps require sterilization of the hopeless victim? – better yet, cut out the nerves that create sexual tension!!! Perhaps let the addicts be the farmers (live on the farms). If they decide to steal what theya re growing, and over do it, theywill die sooner and we don’t have to pay for their life anymore. Talk about controlled end of life issues!

If this kind of setup doesn’t force the USA’s citizens into udnerstanding WHY drugs are stupid, then we and they deserve what we/they get.
My bet is that simple marijuana is not particularly dangerous even though graduating to other drugs seems to be a real problem. But perhaps, with controls like liquour sales have (TRY Establishing STRONG laws like “you cannot get a drivers license for any vehicle” , or “get a college loan”, if you have any trace of drugs in your system” has got to have some major effect.

Will their be people invading the system,.yes, but probably not NEARLY as great as we are dealing with now.
JHumbly submitted as a pacctical and realistic way to deal with drugs — trying to stop their sales won’t work as it obviouslyhasn’t, so join the ‘team’ and RUN the whole thing!! I am SURE the politicians will LOVE the new revenues! Better than casinos even if feeding the same type of addictions!!

#36

We need to do something, but what? Our prisons are already full, and the drug abuse epidemic continues unabated. Leagalizing and taxing drugs may not be a good solution, but at least for now, it is the best solution.

#35

A huge factor to this drug problem would be for people to stop using drugs. The government cannot do it alone.

#34

Legalize all drugs, tax them, regulate them. End of “wars” on them. Those that choose to use the harmful drugs and are a medical, social, mental problem and don’t work or contribute to society will receive no federal or state financial assistance. No free drugs, doctors, glasses, health care. they will need to lean on each other. This would be their choice. Live in peace, don’t harm others, keep a job, put money away for health care and retirement then you are allowed to live anyway you want.
Thank you for your show.

#33

Our government has always passed the blame of our homegrown problem of drug addiction onto others. In fact, it has never tried to address the roots of the problem because it is much easier and politically expedient to blame those who supply it. The decadence of our society, especially our high society, which includes powerful politicians, is manifested by the ever increasing consumption of high-quality drugs, as they are the ones who can afford them. Moreover, what has our government done to catch the criminals in charge of the domestic distribution networks?
The solutions offered by our government are in reality ludicrous at best. They focus on the direct or indirect military intervention in countries like Colombia and Mexico, and the citizens of these countries are the ones who end up paying with their lives for a problem created by American consumers. Of course, this approach achieves two things: It makes our government look tough to appease ignorants voters and it permits our government to meddle in the internal affairs of those countries in order to keep the status quo. The irony of it all is that these two countries have a huge presence of our DEA and yet their drug production and export to our country continues to increase every year.
I personally find it shameful that the media has been incapable of disclosing to the public this reality and has chosen to go along with the charade.

#32

Funny you should ask, but I was just thinking about how peaceful this world would be, if American stopped using drugs. Think about it, it’ll end the drug war in Mexico and even Afghanistan… Either that or just legalize it… Oh well, its just a dream. Even too much to dream about, since there’s so many pay checks connected to it being illegal.

PS: A forbidden subject so I want hold it against you for not publishing it. (smile)

#31

America does have the biggest drug problem. It’s going to be very hard to convince Americans not to use illegal drugs, when the government allow such a heavy dose of pharmaceutical advertising. It used to be much more restricted and it needs to return to that. People are educated to use drugs. Why would illegal drugs work any different.

#30

From the viewpoint of a capitalist the violence can be characterized as a business strategy with one segment attempting to increase their market share at the expense of others. Since the entire business arrangement is under the table no laws apply and you are free to use whatever method is most efficient. Capitalism in its purest form with no government interference except for the occasional enforcement official who is quickly bought off demonstrating more capitalism at work. Who need the cost of advertising and the long term focus on building market share when you can literally put the competition six feet under. Couple the lack of oversight with the tremendous profit margins available in the trade and presto everyone who can stomach some heat wants some of the action. Instead of a filter that encourages the best of society to come forward as business leaders we have developed a filter that selects the worst. The guy with the most guns and least morals wins. Nice! No wonder it is out of control. We need to approach this problem from the perspective of the market not the perspective of enforcement. It clearly is not working! If you want to stop the violence you need to remove the enormous incentives. Legalization of possession coupled with the criminalization of sale eliminates the profit motive with the stroke of a pen. Plus it is self enforcing as now every user as an incentive to turn in the dealer, not protect them! The market for marijuana disappears as soon as the first buds sprout in basements across the nation eliminating billions in profits overnight. Opiates would still have some market as production requires more skill and effort but the government could easily undercut the cost of production. Chemical derivatives are a tough nut but they are in the status quo too, plus they are not a driving force in the violence. Worst case case you get the status quo, only cheaper and without the violence!

#29

The people responsable for the drug wars are the people who use drugs.

#28

The US is not doing enough to stop the drug use. Strong penalties should be adopted (like Syngapore) for the traffickers (hanging) and users (caning) without possibility of parole. The drug producing countries are just doing what any entrepreneur would do, which is to satisfy the demand for a product.The US military has no business flying sorties to erradicate the drug plants when the answer is here in this country.

#27

Prohibition failed. Alcohol is still here and is taxed appropriately. Heroin is handed out for free in Swiss clinics. Legalize drugs in the US and tax them. Use the tax proceeds for drug treatment programs and education.

#26

The U.S. is NOT doing enough. The citizens of the U.S. need to recognize the demand in this country drives the supply and crime in Mexico. We need to work harder in partnership with Mexico to improve the terrible drug war on-going in Mexico. Having a good relationship with Mexico is the best way to insure a secure border with Mexico. Consider a Mexico which is broken up by the drug cartels and receptive to outside influence (i.e., terrorist organizations).
The citizens of the U.S. must be more realistic in facing the recreational use of drugs and more squarely face the issue of educating young kids to resist the pull of drug use. This is a problem that only legalization, education, time, and persistence will overcome.

#25

One need not travel to China to find indigenous cultures lacking human rights. America leads the world in percentile behind bars, thanks to ongoing persecution of hippies, communists, and non-whites under prosecution of the war on drugs. If we’re all about spreading liberty abroad, then why mix the message at home? Peace on the home front would enhance global credibility.

The drug czar’s Rx for prison fodder costs dearly, as lives are flushed down expensive tubes. My shaman’s second opinion is that psychoactive plants are God’s gift. Behold, it’s all good. When Eve ate the apple, she knew a good apple, and an evil prohibition. Canadian Marc Emery is being extradited to prison for selling seeds that American farmers use to reduce U. S. demand for Mexican pot.

The CSA (Controlled Substances Act of 1970) reincarnates Al Capone, endangers homeland security, and throws good money after bad. Fiscal policy burns tax dollars to root out the number-one cash crop in the land, instead of taxing sales. Society rejected the plague of prohibition, but it mutated. Apparently, SWAT teams don’t need no stinking amendment.

Nixon passed the CSA on the false assurance that the Schafer Commission would later justify criminalizing his enemies, but he underestimated Schafer’s integrity. No amendments can assure due process under an anti-science law without due process itself. Psychology hailed the breakthrough potential of LSD, until the CSA shut down research, and pronounced that marijuana has no medical use. Former U.K. chief drugs advisor Prof. Nutt was sacked for revealing that non-smoked cannabis intake is scientifically healthy.

The RFRA (Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993) allows Native American Church members to eat peyote, which functions like LSD. Americans shouldn’t need a specific church membership or an act of Congress to obtain their birthright freedom of religion. God’s children’s free exercise of religious liberty may include entheogen sacraments to mediate communion with their maker.

Freedom of speech presupposes freedom of thought. The Constitution doesn’t enumerate any governmental power to embargo diverse states of mind. How and when did government usurp this power to coerce conformity? The Mayflower sailed to escape coerced conformity. Legislators who would limit cognitive liberty lack jurisdiction.

Common-law holds that adults are the legal owners of their own bodies. The Founding Fathers undersigned that the right to the pursuit of happiness is inalienable. Socrates said to know your self. Mortal lawmakers should not presume to thwart the intelligent design that molecular keys unlock spiritual doors. Persons who appreciate their own free choice of path in life should tolerate seekers’ self-exploration. Liberty is prerequisite for tracking drug-use intentions and outcomes.

#24

Like most Newspaper Writer or Host of tv or radio programme you ask questions that you or anyone else for that matter wants to know the answers.The reason of all our problems is OVERPOPULATION,ie, people are having kids that either they cannot support materialy and or morally/mentally.They beleive that once a child is born it should take care of themselves,WRONG,having only the right amount of children one can afford at all levels would help the kids grow in a better environement and lessen all the problems a child can come accross during it growth.Plus having only the kids we can afford would lessen the problems the world is having.BUT why are you afraid of telling the world,you are just backing up the idea that religious people have been exploiting for ages that “god(s)” will take care of all our problems?A typical example is Haiti where people have kids that they cannot afford and WE let them think that they are right helping them with food BUT not telling them what do do WHY.There are other examples all over the world people have children saying that that is their “divine “right well why do they not ask their “god” to give then the food that they need.Insteadof asking us what we think,you should tell us what you think.The reason you ask people to tell you what they think is to make sure you have the proper ratings otherwise you ABSOLUTLY DO NOT CARE YOU ARE THERE FOR THE MONEY and maybe wait for “a god”to save the world

#23

Drug traffic is a function of supply and demand. Reduce the demand and the amount of drugs will decrease in volume and price. The use of drugs, specifically the imported drugs, within the US should be curtailed by higher fines for possession. Education on the effects of drugs needs to be improved.

#22

Drugs are not the problem, the laws against drugs are. Until we eliminate these laws, they will breed criminals and violence. These laws are America’s version of Shira. We should let people enjoy themselves.

#21

I know drug use causes hardache and hardship, such as that shared by Sarah (below, #17); but passage of time has proven that making the distribution of drugs profitable only adds to this and it does so exponentially. In other words if drug use were made legal, the incentive to recruit would be eliminated, no one would need to steal and kill to buy drugs or to use violence over “territorial” wars, our justice system would be relieved of the enormous cost of prosecuting criminals and those addicted (including pregnant women) would be more likely to seek help. I feel our present system affects many more innocent lives both here and around the globe. How can anyone argue otherwise.

#20

“A good many of our drug addicts start using substances as a way to self-medicate to dull pain they don’t understand…”

“..my ex-husband tested positively on the same Friday that he picked up our son for a weekend visit.”

Sarah — You are confused. The only person who is responsible for your ex-husbands actions is himself. Plus, you are the one that married him and you are the one who chose to make a baby with him. Maybe you should take some responsibility for your poor judgment rather than blame others whom you demonize as “addicts”.

The several hundred million honest, decent human beings who have been declared criminals by U.S. drug laws are not responsible for you husband. Likewise, they are not “addicts” who are in need of prison or “treatment”. In fact, they are not inferior to you or anyone else.

By the way, mass murderers, serial killers, and child molesters are notorious for being “drug free”. Like drug fighters and illegalizers, they get their kicks out of abusing human beings.

#19

There are two ways to deal with the drug problem and until our authorities recognize this, there will be continual killing of innocent people, massive profits for the dealers, and an expense burden on the tax paying public. On solution is to legalize it and tax it. The other option isr we send in massive death squads and indiscriminitly kill all those who are believed to be connected to suppying drugs. Unfortunately many non-guilty persons would also be killed, if this option were selected.

#18

“People in this country need to take responsibility for their bad choices and more effort needs to be directed in that direction.”

Maybe you should focus more on your personal responsibilities rather than what you perceive to be the bad choices of others. In the words of Mark Twain, “There is nothing that needs reforming so much as other people’s bad habits.”

By the way, the biggest danger to young people is to murdered, assaulted, robbed, and arrested by the armies of government and private thugs that have been produced and sustained by this so-called war on drugs which is, in fact, a war against the young, poor, and politically weak.

#17

I live in a state on the Mexican border. Border news and the damage drug cartels and illegal immigration causes this state is a part of our everyday news. I am also the ex-wife of a cocaine addict, and mother of the child we share. Arizona does little to protect our son from his father’s drug use. During a seven-month stint last year, my ex-husband tested positive for cocaine use six times, yet lost his parenting time with our son only twice. At one time, my ex-husband tested positively on the same Friday that he picked up our son for a weekend visit. I didn’t get the results until Monday. He was behind the wheel of a car, the sole caretaker of our child while high. And the response of those employed by the state was, “Well our system does have some holes in it….” We need to have a zero tolerance for drug use that does not reset itself after the user faces his/her consequences, but keeps a running tab that is considered after every positive test.

The United States should also start considering mental illnesses on par with physical illnesses. A good many of our drug addicts start using substances as a way to self-medicate to dull pain they don’t understand, or as an alternative to medications they can’t afford or that aren’t covered on their insurance plans.

#16

First: stop calling the fight against criminality a “war”, which only serves to confuse the issue and may even serve to legitimize criminal violence in the eyes of uneducated youth.
Second: Drug supply is demand-driven, so we need to do much more campaigning in the U.S. to slow demand and spend more resources on getting users to get out of their drug habit.
Thirdly: Legalize marijuana, which by any measure is no more harmful than alcohol, but rather less so. Tax the legalized drug, just like we do alcohol and let us get rid of the crimiality that feeds off marijuana’s illegal status. Needless to say, there would be lots of ways to use the money in the work to deal with the increasingly violent criminality that surrounds drugs, destroying lives and threatening whole nations.

#15

like many who have commented, I also agree that US drug market is responsible for much of the drug war in Mexico. We need to legalize and tax drugs. Like alcohol, street drugs are a social/medical problem not a legal problem. We should be providing counseling to those who have addiction problems and education to children and youth to make better choices.

#14

No!

#13

I have no doubt that the appetite for drugs in the U.S. is fueling the drug trade throughout the world. I also have no doubt that we can never erase that appetite, so, if we legalize those drugs, the main accomplishment of such an action will be to eliminate the profits which drive the illicit drug trade and don’t worry all of you on the religious right, no one is going to force you to smoke a joint.

#12

We own property in No.California for over 25 years, and now that area is taken over by marijuana growers who make millions of dollars without paying taxes. They go off to Costa Rica every winter while we worry about the freezing pipes and road maintenance. These growers are not part of the system, and if the growing was made legal, the prices would fall, the crime related activities would drop off, and those who truly need it for medicinal purposes would benefit without all the problems. All the Mexican cartel hidden groves with guns and violence would hopefully subside. And we could rent our property without the stress of not knowing if our rent was being paid through legal or illegal means.

#11

Demand always fuels a supply, educate children on the tragic results of addictions and hope they will make intelligent choices. This includes cigarettes,alcohol,gambling,narcotics,cocaine,speed,and marajuana. People in this country need to take responsibility for their bad choices and more effort needs to be directed in that direction.

#10

No, the u.s.a. is not doing enough to halt drug sales. Instead of spending $1 billion on that border fence of the u.s.a./mexico could easily fund the creation of psychotherapeutic clinics all over the country for those who want to avoid the use of illicit drugs and fostering the study of oneself. California’s legalizing marijuana will make things worse short and long term.

#9

That is the wrong question. The real problem is three fold:
1. the easy availability of guns in the U.s. that can then be sold to Mexico
2. The use of drugs in the U.S. which then provides the monies to the gangs.
3. The ong drug sentences for drug mules.

The solution is to lessen the use of drugs in the U.S.
This should be done by the legalization of most drugs. This would provide a quality of the product and allow for taxing of the product. The taxes would then go to health care for those addicted to the product and the law enforcement for those who then produce illegal copies of legal drugs.

#8

Drugs are cheaper than 10 years ago because ther is more coming in, lots of people on all sides are killing each other, simpley cut the snakes head off by legalizing and regulating drugs. We do it with cigarettes and Alchohol. IMHO I would rather there be State control on Marijuana and that will lessen the cost taxpayers pay to keep a pot head in jail, instead lets tax the hell out of drugs like we do with cigs and use that money for our health system, schools and create more jobs.

#7

With the World economy still in a slump, I think the drug thing will continue will be bad on both sides of the border.

#6

Regarding what is a crime and who are the criminals, I have two questions for C (Clueless) Suits: Suppose that you were peacefully minding your own business when a heavily armed gang attacked you, threw you to the ground, pushed your face into the pavement, pointed a dozen guns at your head, and blew your head off if you resisted, just because they did not approve of what you ate for breakfast — would you agree that they were violent criminals or would you conclude that you were the violent criminal?

Second question: Suppose that a similar gang, armed to the teeth, kicked down your door, invaded and ransacked your home, terrorized your family, stole your property, and murdered anyone who resisted, just because they or others did not approve of what you chose to drink or smoke — would you agree that those thugs were violent criminals or would you conclude that your family were the violent criminals? Freedom_First@verizon.net

#5

The war on drugs is, in fact, a war against poor people and freedom. The reason why medicinal plants and extracts were illegalized is because they cannot be patented. The rich and powerful cannot make any money from plant medicines that can be produced by poor people for pennies. Thus, millions of poor producers and consumers who prefer safe, effective and inexpensive plant medicines must be assaulted, robbed, arrested, and often murdered in order for the rich and powerful to become more rich and powerful.

#4

The question, Is the U.S. doing enough to crack down on illegal domestic drug use?, is like asking, Should we clean the viruses out of our contaminated computer, and install computer security, or should we just let the viruses overtake the computer?

The increasing appetite for illicit drugs is fueling drug wars in Mexico because the trade is very lucrative.

However, the increasing drug use in the U.S. is drastically decreasing its intelligence, respect, and standing in the world.

This drug use slowly devaluing the country’s significance: its law, economics, education, culture, and its direction.

I hate to see that some U.S. states are now decriminalizing illegal drug use.

It’s time to cut the supply of drugs into the U.S., and time to cut the demand of drugs from south of the border–before it’s too late!

We must do whatever it takes to remove illicit drugs from the U.S.

Someone said, “First you do drugs, and then they do you!” Right now, illicit drugs are “doing” the U.S. very much harm, but it happens over a long period of time (many decades), that it is hardly noticed as harmful.

#3

yah i dont see it ending any time soon but legalization of herb in the USA is a step and mexico needs to follow through on having small amounts legal of most drugs in its country. and well just some people gotta get anhillated i guess just less money for the war more money on education

#2

The war on Drugs is waste of resourses. Why not Improve living Conditions here at home by creating jobs. Many people are forced into illegal Activiaty, because they need to Support their families. Crime payes on both sides of the bourder. The increasing number of Unemployed,means drug dealers have more Customers.It is far to easy to puchases a Fire Arm in the US.People here have PTSD,it doesn’t matter if your a soldier or not.

#1

Of course not….it is too much of an economic stimulus. They cannot afford to mess with it.

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