ONEIDA - Howard Wooldridge is taking an old-fashioned approach to spreading his message about the benefits of drug legalization.
For the past seven months the 54-year-old retired police officer has been riding on horseback across the United States, calling for an end to harsh legal penalties for American drug users.
"I want to bring awareness to the failure of our policy of drug prohibition and try to get Americans to agree that we need to sell all drugs in a state-regulated store," said Wooldridge, who is from Fort Worth, Texas.
Having worked as a police officer in Bath Township, Mich., which is near East Lansing, Wooldridge is now a member of the international organization Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. Founded in 2002, LEAP is an organization comprised of current and former law enforcement officials who advocate for national systems of drug regulation instead of prohibition.
"What I've seen across America is that with tremendous consensus people agree this policy is a failure, people agree that prisons are worthless, and people agree that nobody should go to jail for personal amounts of an illegal drug," he said.