We are victims of the so called War on Drugs. While we were sleeping Friday night a burglar came in through our doggy door, stole Bobbi's purse, grabbed my car keys, disengaged the overhead door in the garage and stole my Infiniti Hybrid SUV. They were in the house and we didn't hear a thing. But, this has been happening in our neighborhood a lot, and I figure the perps were some of those folks who have gone un prosecuted because of poor funding in the DAs Office. Meanwhile, all the cops could do was shrug. The insurance agents said it is happening a lot. The drugs keep flowing and the users keep using. And the 'war on drugs' is a joke as it always has been. This kind of crime would be cut by 90% if these addicts didn't need the money. Legalization would cure that, along with funding for rehab services funding instead of putting money into Armored Cars for the police. Here is another view from one of my neighbors on the list serve.
"First, the drug problem is simply a reflection of supply and demand. As they explain in every economics textbook, whenever there is a demand for a product, there will be someone who will be there to supply it. Even though we claim to have been fighting a "War on Drugs" for decades, that charade has never been more than a dog and pony show, brought out by politicians at election time to demonstrate that they are not quite as ineffective as they normally appear.
Second, we as a country really haven't tried very hard at all to lessen the demand. Here in New Mexico, there is virtually no adequate treatment for addicts who seek treatment for substance abuse. You can't tell people who seek treatment to come back in a year, or when space opens up, and expect a drug treatment program actually to work. In a word, the drug treatment we have is a joke, and a very sick, sad and intolerable joke at that.
Third, we have done far less than we could have or should have to diminish the supply. Take the case of Afghanistan, for example. We have been at war there since 2001, we have spent something on the order of a trillion dollars fighting the Taliban and various and sundry warlords, and what is the result? Well, Afghanistan's opium poppy production now goes into more than 90% of heroin worldwide. Except for the initial year of the war, Afghanistan has been the world's greatest illicit opium producer in every single year going back to 1992. Opium production has risen every year since the beginning of the U.S. occupation. More land is used for opium production in Afghanistan than is used for coca production in all of Latin America put together. As if that weren't enough, in addiction to heroin, Afghanistan is also the world's largest producer of cannabis, in the form of hashish. This is not to say that we haven't changed some conditions in the country. For example, we have built some beautiful roads which have made it much easier for the Taliban to move the opium and other drugs to buyers outside Afghanistan,
Well, I think you get my point. One can't say that we have really addressed the problem of the supply of opiates. At the same time, we have done virtually nothing to address the demand for addictive drugs in this country, even with respect, I might add for soldiers like one of our best friends who came home to his wife and kids from Afghanistan not only with PTSD but also addicted to drugs, for which the Marines kindly gave him 30 days of treatment in a rehab facility near Camp Lejeune.
So where do we go from here? Well, the current national administration seems to want nothing more than to resurrect Betty Ford's "Just Say No" program of years past, something whose low cost would be equaled only by its ineffectiveness. Our own Governor, and Mayor and other putative leaders all seem unwilling to even have a serious conversation about legalization (which we favor), never mind providing the funds necessary to address the problems that we face in a substantive way. And dealing with the current situation will take money, and time, and most importantly the willingness to recognize the gravity of the problems, and finally the empathy required to care about dealing with them. I'm sorry, friends, we can't wait for crude oil prices to rise, and the oil and gas industry to pour money again into the coffers of our state. Oddly enough, our problems won't solve themselves or go away on their own. However, intelligent, knowledgeable leaders, if we can find some, and money, and doctors, and nurses and caring will at least start us on our way. It's not just our homes and our cars and our safety that are at stake. It's our sense of honor, and the immense satisfaction of doing the right thing, that hang in the balance here as well."