Drug Use is Personal, Not Public Problem 

Drug Use is Personal, Not Public Problem 
Posted by FoM on December 26, 2000 at 22:44:05 PT
By Chris Buors
Source: Washington Times
 I take umbrage with Robert Sharpe, program officer with the Lindesmith Center-Drug Policy Foundation of Washington "U.S. war on drugs only feeds problems in Colombia," Letters, Dec. 22. Mr. Sharpe recommends that the government treat "all substance abuse  legal or otherwise" as a "public health problem." Public health problems traditionally have been "communicable diseases" like typhoid or tuberculosis that pose an immediate danger to the public. 
E coli or poor sanitary conditions that could result in a rodent infestation could also be considered "public health" concerns.   Drug use is a vice, not a crime or a medical disorder. Drug use is a private health matter. Taking drugs is an act of the will, not something that is "caught" like a disease. By suggesting that private health matters are somehow akin to public health concerns, Mr. Sharpe implicitly approves of the government's prohibitionist interventions.   Government should mind their own business. Is excessive drinking in your own home a "public health" concern? Does it cause you harm if your neighbor is privately using drugs? If drug use does not break your leg or pick your pocket, then it should be of no concern to legitimate government. Drug laws are the cause of more crimes than drug use.   The government should restore our natural right to drugs. As Thomas Jefferson said in an address to the Virginia State Legislature, "If the state were to control our drugs and our diet then our bodies would be in such keeping as our souls are now."   Chris Buors   Winnipeg ManitobaSource: Washington Times (DC)Author: Chris BuorsPublished: December 26, 2000Copyright: 2000 News World Communications, Inc.Contact: letters washtimes.comWebsite: by Robert Sharpe & Web Site:TLC - DPF On Drugs Only Feeds Problems In Colombia Marijuana Closes Gateway
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Comment #5 posted by freedom fighter on December 27, 2000 at 11:19:21 PT
Hi kindone,
just a correction, Ben Franklin is the author of the quote. I get confused with Thomas and Ben's quotes too. :) \/
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Comment #4 posted by Dan B on December 27, 2000 at 10:52:40 PT:
I'm so sorry...
Kathleen, I am sorry to read of your loss, and I appreciate your willingness to share something so personal with us. I, and I'm sure many of the rest of us, will be thinking of/praying for you and your family. It's sad that so many don't see the harm in alcohol because the people who should be warning them about it are too busy focusing their energies on relatively miniscule "problems," like marijuana use. The correct approach would be to warn of potential dangers, and let people decide for themselves which dangers they are willing to live with. I can't help but consider the many lives that could be saved if people would simply switch from using alcohol and tobacco to using marijuana.Dan B
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Comment #3 posted by kathleen wedzik on December 27, 2000 at 10:13:59 PT:
I'm Still Praying to God...
I'm still praying to God that the government opens its eyes and stops acting with such fear in its heart. After what alcohol has done to our society, no wonder there is so much fear. My father went to heaven on November 27, 2000, he was 68 years old, he suffered a cerebral hemmorage of the brain from high blood pressure, he was a social alcoholic. 
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Comment #2 posted by TroutMask on December 27, 2000 at 08:08:37 PT
Robert Sharpe
Robert Sharpe (the author of the letter mentioned) and Clifford Schaffer (Schaffer Library of Drug Policy) will be remembered forever for the work that they have done and continue to do to combat the War on Some Drugs.-TM
Schaffer Library of Drug Policy
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Comment #1 posted by kindone on December 27, 2000 at 07:57:37 PT
well said
"A society that will trade a little liberty for a little order will lose both and deserve neither." Thomas Jefferson
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