Cherry Hill Courier Post, NJ
A Camden activist says legalizing drugs is the solution to bringing down violence, crime and drug-related deaths in the city.
Trying to persuade his audience, Frank Fulbrook, a longtime Camden activist, said the war on drugs is simply hurting society and cities like Camden, and therefore, drugs should be legalized.
"Camden can't be revitalized as long as drugs are illegal," said Fulbrook, who conducted the recent "Forum on America Drug Policy and Impacts on Cities like Camden" at Rutgers University.
Fulbrook's proposal extends only to people over 21.
"Once you are an adult, you are responsible for what you do, not the government," said Fulbrook.
However, not everybody in the audience felt that drugs should be legalized -- saying that would not end addiction and the problems that come with it.
"Alcohol is legal, and the problems haven't stopped. They still persist," said Anthony Bertolotti, a math major at Rutgers."My father is an alcoholic, alcohol is legal and he abused my mother."
It is important to distinguish between the effects of a drug and the effects of prohibition. Drug Warriors intentionally blur this distinction. They are simply throwing gasoline on a fire and then pointing to the flames as justification for their existence. This can be thought of as rent seeking.