The following Letter to the Editor was submitted by LEAP speaker James E. Gierach to the Chicago Sun-Times:
Valerie Davis, the 42-year-old woman killed this week in a cops-chase-drug-suspect scenario, would be alive today if drugs were legalized, controlled and regulated. And the drug suspect, now a murder suspect, would have been doing something else for a living, if drugs were legalized. (“Drugs suspects fleeing cops ram into car; woman killed,” Chicago Sun-Times, 11/4/09) Also a drug agent’s bullet fired in the excitement of the chase would not have risked killing innocent bystanders in the Washington Park neighborhood. In sum, drug agents escalated a drug-prohibition violation into the death of an innocent motorist that could have been anyone of us.
If drugs were legalized, some of the drug agents involved in this botched drug-enforcement operation could get a job making something and constructively contributing to American society and gross domestic product. Instead a woman is dead, needlessly, and some drug buyers will be momentarily inconvenienced as they switch drug dealers. A drug suspect will likely go to prison for murder. The taxpayers will get the bill, and Valerie’s relatives get to cry.
Truly – wasteful, counter-productive, deadly, expensive and futile folly. But that’s the drug war in a nutshell.