War on Drugs Stumbles Along 

War on Drugs Stumbles Along 
Posted by FoM on October 22, 2000 at 07:54:54 PT
Source: Los Angeles Times
Gen. Barry McCaffrey, who announced last week that he will soon resign as the nation's anti-drug czar, spent the mid-1970s recovering from Vietnam War wounds in a U.S. military garrison in Germany. He says there was "devastating" drug and alcohol dependency among troops that helped incite crimes ranging from vandalism to gang rape.   As director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy for the past four years, McCaffrey used that experience to form a sophisticated understanding of the links between drugs and crime. 
Criticizing the "war on drugs" metaphor favored by former President George Bush, McCaffrey predicted in 1996 what numerous studies have borne out today: that draconian laws imposing long prison sentences on petty drug offenders do nothing to reduce crime.   "I suggest to people that if you want to fight a war on drugs, then sit down at your own kitchen table and talk to your own children," McCaffrey once said. The "analogy of cancer is far more adaptive and useful as a model to a way of thinking and talking about the problem."   However, McCaffrey's policies in office have been less enlightened than his rhetoric. Though overall drug use has decreased during his tenure, drug policy experts say the nation's real drug problem, its 5 million hard-core drug users, is essentially unchanged since the 1980s.   The former general often has focused on marginal problems--threatening to arrest doctors and patients who used medical marijuana, for instance--and has not done enough to implement President Clinton's campaign promise to shift money from failed prohibition and enforcement efforts to successful community-based treatment and supervision programs like drug courts. Two-thirds of the federal anti-drug budget still goes for law enforcement and interdiction, the same as under the Bush administration.   Blame does not lie with McCaffrey alone. His office was created with great fanfare in 1988 to coordinate the anti-drug budgets of 50 government departments and agencies. But the office gained no authority over those agencies and, not surprisingly, they balked at being second-guessed. The challenge for the next president will be not only shifting funding from law enforcement to treatment but also giving the next anti-drug czar powers that McCaffrey never had. Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)Published: Sunday, October 22, 2000 Copyright: 2000 Los Angeles TimesAddress: Times Mirror SquareLos Angeles, CA 90053Fax: (213) 237-4712Contact: letters latimes.comWebsite: Articles:Saying Goodbye and Good Riddance to a Drug Czar, Barry General's Farewell Says He Will Leave White House Post
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Comment #3 posted by Antianti on October 22, 2000 at 16:54:36 PT:
I am pretty sure it used to be active
Thanks FoM, I was just pulling websites from memory. It's probably not active anymore.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on October 22, 2000 at 09:18:42 PT
Hi Antianti,When I click on your link I'm not getting a web site but Domain information. I just wasn't sure if you knew that or not.
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Comment #1 posted by Antianti on October 22, 2000 at 09:07:17 PT:
Medical issue, not criminal
Yes, the power of being a goddamn doctor. What in the hell does a lawyer or an army general(non-medical) know about drugs? Jesus, I wish the powers that be would quit with the vote-grabbing rhetoric and do the right thing!
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