Saturday, April 11, 2009

The incarceration rates in this free country of ours are an outrage. The American criminal justice system makes the Saudi and Chinese versions look enlightened and humane in comparison. For this I blame the unjust, unholy, unconstitutional War on Some Drugs. I say "some drugs" because, clearly, the War does not target all drugs. I am perfectly free, for example to walk to the party store on the corner and buy beer. I couldn't have done that eighty years ago--not in those simpler War on One Drug days.

With Prohibition, I might well have become a victim of rival mobs trying to corner the beer market in my part of town. Alternatively, one of our finest might have seized me and thrown me into one of the rape pens that pass for our "corrections" system. All for my own good of course!

"Society had a crime problem," Tom Robbins famously wrote, "so it hired cops. Next thing society knew, it had a cop problem."

It's certainly theoretically possible for state-funded security forces to prevent more crime than they preserve. But we'll never enter that Promised Land so long as they have the authority to arrest, taser, beat, bludgeon, shoot, incarcerate and kill peaceable people who ingest or inhale plant products of their own choice.



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