I am loathe to join the mass of presidential bloggers but this is too important.
Only Ron Paul has consistently voted against expanding the War on Drugs. He realizes that longer sentences and more enforcement are futile. Democrats should support this because minorities and lower income communities have been devistated by these policies. Republicans should support this because they are supposed to believe in smaller government and personal freedom.
Sadly, Ron Paul is alone in this issue.
He voted against millitary drug patrols, against random drug tests for employees, for legalizing medical marijuana, and adopted the Republican Liberty Caucas position that the War on Drugs has destroyed the Bill of Rights.
I agree with Ron Paul in that the War on Drugs can not be won by “getting tougher”.
Every effort to get tougher on drugs either invovles 1) longer prison terms or 2) less privacy for Americans.
Longer prison terms do not work. Dealers are easily replaced once incarcerated. Texas is building scores of news prisons to keep up with our tough drug sentencing laws. Guess what? We still have drug addicts and drug dealers all over the State.
Less privacy is a step on the road to tyranny. The Supreme Court has made a mockery of the 4th amendment.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated…
What is more important- Those words of the Founding Fathers, or busting some dope peddler who got pulled over for speeding? More often than not the Supreme Court values the bust over the right to privacy. Without moving a DEA agent into each home it is hard to imagine how much more privacy we can give up.
Why not have a War on Rapists? Or a War on Murder? Law Enforcement is a limited resource. Crimes with victims should take precedent. Would 9/11 have happened if the DEA and it’s thousands of employees had been protecting us from terrorists instead of protecting us from drug addicts?
As a former prosecutor I can tell you that Prohibition and Incarceration do not work. Jailed dealers will be replaced as Americans will still choose to be drug addicts. I’ve seen drug courts do great work but it’s a rare drug addict who is helped or cured by 6 months in State Jail.
American support the Drug War for the worst reason. Fear. The government can always sell less freedom to a scared electorate (Patriot Act).
Does Ron Paul have a chance? Doubtful. But he is right about the Drug War.