Let’s End the War on Drugs
posted by Sting at the Huffington Post
Composer, Singer, Actor, Activist
Posted: March 31, 2010 08:38 AM
Whether it’s music, activism or daily life, the one ideal to which I have always aspired is constant challenge — taking risks, stepping out of my comfort zone, exploring new ideas.
I am writing because I believe the United States must do precisely that — and so, therefore, must all of us — in the case of what has been the most unsuccessful, unjust yet untouchable issue in politics: the War on Drugs.
The War on Drugs has failed — but it’s worse than that. It is actively harming our society. Violent crime is thriving in the shadows to which the drug trade has been consigned. People who genuinely need help can’t get it. Neither can people who need medical marijuana to treat terrible diseases. We are spending billions, filling up our prisons with non-violent offenders and sacrificing our liberties.
For too long, the War on Drugs has been a sacrosanct undertaking that was virtually immune from criticism in the public realm. Politicians dared not disagree for fear of being stigmatized as “soft on crime.” Any activist who spoke up was dismissed as a fringe element.
But recently, I discovered just how much that’s changing–and that’s how I came to speak out on behalf of an extraordinary organization called the Drug Policy Alliance.
I learned of DPA, as they’re known, while reading what once might have been the unlikeliest of places for a thoughtful discussion of the Drug War — the op-ed page of the Wall Street Journal.