This is one place, and probably the only place where I’m likely to part ways with my fellow conservative friends. I know they agree with me that the war on drugs has been an utter failure but my views on drug legalization is more liberal than most other conservatives. My views on this are libertarian.
I know all the arguments about how drug addiction breaks up families, endangers children and ruins lives. Those are all righteous and laudable, as well as heartbreaking arguments and drugs, like tobacco, is a truly defenseless cause. But no one can say that our so-called war on drugs has been effective by any margin. We’ve failed to beat it back and we will continue to fail. It’s a lost cause as a war. The only winners are the addicts and the drug cartels: Mexican and American.
Debra Saunders at Rasmussen Reports has an excellent column today about this. I could parrot her here but that’s really a waste of time and I could never do justice to what she’s written. I hope you’ll go read it. She makes excellent points about who is really paying for this bogus war and I’m sure you can guess – it’s you and me. She says “that if half of Americans who use pseudoephedrine drugs [otc cold and allergy medications] had to visit a doctor to get a prescription, it would cost $750 million per year. Meth addicts won’t be burdened by any new laws. It’s the law-abiding people who will pay.”
This is exactly why our drug war is non-winnable: those who don’t break laws are the ones who pay in dollars and loss of freedom, at the expense of the few who brew meth in their kitchens and blow up their homes and children in the process.