Failed war on drugs won’t end because there’s money to be made

SHARE Failed war on drugs won’t end because there’s money to be made

| Seth Perlman/AP file photo

What a pleasant surprise to read columnist John Stossel disavowing Richard Nixon’s (unwinnable) War On Drugs. (“Sessions’ renewed drug war cruel, stupid,” May 18). For numerous valid reasons that he cited, he declaims Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recent doubling down on said failed policy. But as others have noted, by now there are many groups with a vested interest in keeping it going, including Sessions’ buddies running private prisons, which, like hotels, need as close to full occupancy as possible for maximum profit. Sessions is only too happy to oblige, especially since in many states, felons lose the right to vote, and police departments already are primed to focus their efforts on people of color, whose votes Republicans already try to suppress via discriminatory legislation despite a string of annulments by judicial verdicts.

An army of bailiffs, prosecutors, and jail guards would lose their taxpayer-funded jobs if drugs were decriminalized as Stossel asks. Add that to the baseless claim by misguided moralists that the drug war “protects the children” (it doesn’t) and legislators misplace their logic.

Ending those multi-billion-dollar costs would vastly help balance federal and state budgets, except for legislators disregarding the obvious. Pitiful. Just pitiful. Sessions the reactionary thus makes himself the poster boy for backward thinking while society needlessly suffers the burden.

Ted Z. Manuel, Hyde Park

No defending Roger Ailes 

Yikes. I am thinking Steve Huntley may not be completely aware of the allegations that faced the late abjectly immoral founder of Fox News before his death. Praising Roger Ailes for bringing conservative propaganda to social acceptance and thus completely destroying civil discourse in our country, while he allegedly sexual harassed women, seems more than a little wrong.

Edward Juillard, West Beverly

Quit squirreling about squirrels

Chicago is in financial ruins and crime is rampant, but Ald. Howard Brookins has nothing better to do than to conduct a City Council hearing about a “menacing squirrel epidemic.” I had to read the article twice to make sure I wasn’t hallucinating.

Mike Rice, Jefferson Park

Failed governor wants to buy another round

Gov. Bruce Rauner hasn’t even started doing his job yet, but he’s already attempting to buy the job title again with the help of his billionaire buddy, Ken Griffin. I guess when you are that rich, you can afford to blind yourself to the faults of friends. Gov. Gridlock is in violation of the Illinois Constitution by not presenting a budget, on time, yet he thinks he deserves another chance. Rauner should stop holding the state and its people hostage to his “Wreck Illinois” agenda.

Ann Gutierrez, Tinley Park

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