To the People

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or TO THE PEOPLE.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

I Was Saying....

Jay Hancock in the Baltimore Sun:
There is a way to stop Baltimore's murder epidemic. Improve Baltimore's schools. Revive Baltimore's neighborhoods. And it doesn't involve more police, higher taxes or longer prison sentences.

Instead, it requires restructuring what is possibly the city's biggest industry.

Legalize heroin and cocaine sales, and you erase the economic force behind Baltimore's heartache [...]

No single change in policy would lead to so many good outcomes. Neighbors could take back neighborhoods. Housing values and the tax base would rise. Arrests and incarceration would plummet.

Billions blown on the drug wars and prisons could be spent instead on tax cuts and schools - and drug treatment and drug education. With no narcotics lords as role models, more city kids might pay attention to schoolwork. With less city violence, more companies might move in to employ them [...]

Of course no politician with a chance of getting elected is talking about this. Former Baltimore Mayor Kurt Schmoke was ridiculed for broaching the idea in the 1990s. A. Robert Kaufman, the Socialist candidate in yesterday's mayoral election, has long supported legalization. He probably got less than 1 percent of the vote. Presidential candidates Ron Paul (a libertarian Republican), Mike Gravel and Dennis Kucinich (Democrats), all skeptical of the war on drugs, are likely to do about as well.
Good, it's nice to see this in print at the Sun. More of it please.

Full article here. Reader reaction, mostly positive, here.

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