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Sunday, July 30, 2006

stopping the violence

I've long believed that the best way to reduce America's (and Mexico's) huge homicide rate(s) would be to end the war on drugs. Over at Alternet, Norm Stamper lays it out in "How Legalizing Drugs Will End the Violence":
Illegal drugs are expensive precisely because they are illegal. The products themselves are worthless weeds -- cannabis (marijuana), poppies (heroin), coca (cocaine) -- or dirt-cheap pharmaceuticals and "precursors" used, for example, in the manufacture of methamphetamine. Yet today, marijuana is worth as much as gold, heroin more than uranium, cocaine somewhere in between. It is the U.S.'s prohibition of these drugs that has spawned an ever-expanding international industry of torture, murder and corruption. In other words, we are the source of Mexico's "drug problem."
I have one quibble with the article, though. The author says:
Using the Brady Bill "loophole" (and congressional and presidential failure to extend the ban on assault rifles), all it takes is a phony stateside driver's license and a handful of cash to walk out with semi-automatic Uzis, AR-15s and AK-47s.
This is a myth, there is no gun show loophole. The laws that apply at a gun show are the exact same that apply everywhere else. The assault weapon ban was a feel-good law for left-wing gun haters, nothing more. See here and here for more.

Spotted via Drug War Rant.


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