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In the wake of Sandy Hook, there is much discussion of legislation on reducing such tragic incidents. But most of the proposed legislation is ineffective and doesn't address directly any solution to the Sandy Hook spree or other, recent, high-profile mass shooting incidents. Included in discussions are the effect on impressionable young people that the glorification of violence and gangs as seen in popular movies or heard in rap songs has.
The executive director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition says:
If we were to legalize and regulate all currently illicit drugs today, we would see a dramatic decrease in gun violence. Cartels and street dealers arm themselves with arsenals to protect their illegal investments and to settle disputes. This culture of using gun violence in settling disputes bleeds into society as a whole and is particularly detrimental to our impressionable youth. Under a system of legalized regulation, the black market drug trade would be a non issue, the resulting carnage would subside and the "gangster" culture would dissolve.
If you agree, please join this voice of dissent, and sign the petition to show your support for reducing gun violence directly by reducing a major cause of it: drug prohibition.

LEAP represents veterans of the war on drugs who count wasted lives and resources on a personal level. These officers of the law and the court are standing up and speaking out unabashedly on the fallacy and dangers of this war on Americans of 40 years and one trillion dollars wasted. America has 5% of the world's population but incarcerates nearly 25% of the world's prison population. Please stand with LEAP, and end the incentive to violence in our streets. The call includes any citizen, but especially former or current LEO's.
 

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Signed. Will donate soon.
 

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I agree with LEAP on the drug war issue. But, I'm not convinced
that ending that war on drugs would reduce gun crimes.

Wise guys, thugs, clever gang leaders, corrupt
business men, will ALWAYS find other crimes to engage in and use violence to settle their
disputes with rivals.

Most of the notorious "Mafia" crimes of earlier days had nothing to do with drugs. They revolved
around extortion, protection rackets, and prostitution. Turf was protected, as with drugs, at the point
of a knife or a gun, or with bats and brass knuckles.

We kid ourselves if we think that ending the drug wars will suddenly turn law breakers into
gainfully employed citizens.

There are good reasons IMO to end the war on drugs, but reducing street crime probably isn't
going to be more than a temporary effect.

In the neighborhoods where I grew up, and I think Secret Spuk can back me on this though perhaps
he is too young to have experienced what I am going to describe, there were many small businesses
which inexplicably had "pinball machines" installed. It was sort of common knowledge that a business
that didn't let the machines be installed would face some sort of retaliation-- a little fire, an accident so sad.

Doing away with our drug laws would only drive the entrepreneurs of the crime world from one sort of
crime to another-- and they would be equally violent, because that is what criminals do/are.
 

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Repeal of prohibition eliminates a lot of violence if our history with alcohol serves as any example. The violence of today's drug prohibition is more global and so much worse than alcohol prohibition and, in the last 40 years, three times longer than alcohol prohibition. The potential profit of illicit drug trade attracts and corrupts many from all walks of life, including the young. Repeal of drug prohibition seems an appropriate talking point during the current discussion on ways to reduce violence in our society.

Extortion doesn't compare to the global economy of illicit drugs. Prostitution is similar to drugs in that it is often a transaction between consenting adults; and there is legal prostitution now and throughout history. Our legal resources should not be bogged down prosecuting consenting adults and, with just the partial redirection of resources with repeal, will be better able to go after prosecuting the predator criminals.
 
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Repeal of prohibition eliminates a lot of violence if our history with alcohol serves as any example. The violence of today's drug prohibition is more global and so much worse than alcohol prohibition and, in the last 40 years, three times longer than alcohol prohibition. The potential profit of illicit drug trade attracts and corrupts many from all walks of life, including the young. Repeal of drug prohibition seems an appropriate talking point during the current discussion on ways to reduce violence in our society.

Extortion doesn't compare to the global economy of illicit drugs. Prostitution is similar to drugs in that it is often a transaction between consenting adults; and there is legal prostitution now and throughout history. Our legal resources should not be bogged down prosecuting consenting adults and, with the windfall of repeal, will be better able to go after prosecuting the predators.
I was just illustrating that there are other areas of crime thugs will move into. Bookmaking, for example.
But that is old time. I don't know what opportunities await the criminal mind, but they are certainly
out there and the thugs aren't going to disappear simply because drugs would become legal or
perhaps prostitution were legal. I'm a libertarian (liberal) if you like on these issues. I'd make a lot
of lifestyle crimes legal. But I'm not going to do it because I think the thugs and gangsters will magically
disappear. They won't. They'll just find or create new businesses with new territories to protect.
 
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They already have more than drugs to profit from. Extortion, burglary, various smuggling, human trafficking to include prostitution. Ending the war on drugs (which I support) isn't going to change anything. There needs to be a hard crack down on gangs and their members. Which given the liberal candy reared society we have become in regards to how we treat criminals, it's not going to happen.
 

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Legalizing drugs would have a direct reduction of violent crime. Let the drug manufacturers have at it and let the government tax it and let people who want it have it. We're trying to legislate morality, it's not going to happen. Repealing prohibition didn't turn this country into a land of drunks (except for some parts of Wisconsin, but that's a different story all together), legalizing drugs wouldn't change the additction rate that we have today.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Gun Control and Prohibition

Gun control and prohibition go hand-in-hand. Though Hopyard and 031131 are skeptical that repeal of prohibition reduces violence, there is evidence that it does. Here is an informed opinion on the correlation between the government's war on drugs and its people control program via gun control:
Malcolm Kyle:

Prohibition has diverted police resources away from other law enforcement activities with the result that violent crime and crime against property is driven far higher than it would have been otherwise. To the extent that communities divert law enforcement resources from violent crimes to illegal drug offenses the risk of punishment for engaging in violent crime is reduced.

The National Firearms Act of 1934 was actually a direct response to the acute rise in prohibition (1919-33) engendered gun violence.

PROHIBITION EQUATES TO MORE VIOLENT CRIME WHICH LEADS TO MORE CALLS FOR GUN CONTROL

The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada reviewed 15 studies that evaluated the association between violence and drug law enforcement. "Our findings suggest that increasing drug law enforcement is unlikely to reduce drug market violence. Instead, the existing evidence base suggests that gun violence and high homicide rates may be an inevitable consequence of drug prohibition and that disrupting drug markets can paradoxically increase violence."

During alcohol prohibition all profits went to enrich criminals and corrupt politicians. Young men, while battling over turf, died every day on inner-city streets. A vast fortune was wasted on enforcement that could have gone on education. On top of the budget-busting prosecution and incarceration costs, billions in taxes were lost. Finally the economy collapsed! Sound familiar?...
NFA of 1934 was a knee-jerk political palliative for the Valentine's Day Massacre of the prohibition year, 1929. ATF.gov says:
While the NFA was enacted by Congress as an exercise of its authority to tax, the NFA had an underlying purpose unrelated to revenue collection. As the legislative history of the law discloses, its underlying purpose was to curtail, if not prohibit, transactions in NFA firearms. Congress found these firearms to pose a significant crime problem because of their frequent use in crime, particularly the gangland crimes of that era such as the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre....
Law Enforcement Against Prohibition says,
As street cops, prosecutors, judges and others who have worked in every facet of drug prohibition, and as those who support them, LEAP members know that the overwhelming majority of preventable gun violence is directly and predictably tied to turf battles over the control of currently illegal drugs. As members representing the full spectrum of opinion on gun control, we know that reducing gun violence has little to do with either gun control or gun rights....

As with the last war on drugs (known as Alcohol Prohibition), our current drug policies have created a grinding, ongoing slaughter. Those who deal in illicit drugs lack recourse to non-violent conflict resolution, hence the reliance on guns. Guns for self protection. Guns to expand market share. Guns to send competitors and community activists a message....

Changing our drug policies to end drug prohibition is the single most effective way to drastically reduce gun violence.
Maintain pressure on all fronts. Even ignoring the aggregate social and economic costs, empirical evidence and an academic report imply that a vote to repeal prohibition is a vote against government gun control. Sign the petition.
 

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If we were to legalize and regulate all currently illicit drugs today
IMO this will drive the underground. In MI, we have legalized medical marijuana, a lot of the care givers have come under attack from thugs and gang bangers looking for an easy score. While I agree with ending the drug war, government intervention might not be the best answer.
 

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I'm not sure this is the answer. While I personally believe that consenting adults should be able to make their own decisions, good or bad, as long as they are not negatively impacting others, there is a lot of hair on this one. And, the repeal of prohibition did not stop violence, it merely lead to it simmering down for a period while the criminals shifted into drugs. IMHO if we legalize drugs they will simply find something else. It might be new types of drugs or something else that we haven't thought of. The criminal marketplace is like any other capitalist market - it will change and adapt to the environment. Some may go out of business, but where there is a will there is a way.
 

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Pssst. Hey, buddy, want to score a can of gold paint?
 

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I appreciate the honesty of these law enforcement vets and their perspective.It is a very difficult issue to address.I fear that legalizing drugs and putting it under federal controll will just foster crime and violence in different avenues.
 

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...I've been thinking about this all day, and I believe it's one of the most stupid, cowardly approaches to reduce gun violence that I've ever heard of...

...Hoppy's right about them just changing horses...there will always be black markets, gangs, criminals...caving in to the problem is not solving it...it's denying it...

...maximum enforcement efforts, maximum sentences, mandatory 10-year-no-parole sentences if a gun's involved in a crime, THAT's a drug war...we've been skirmishing...and they've been getting stronger and bolder...

...legalize drugs???? HELL NO...I've spent a night standing over a beautiful 15-year-old who lay comatose because of an overdose...and watched her die...and we want to legalize what killed her so the government can tax it and make it socially acceptable??? just HELL, NO!!!our governments at local, state, and federal levels have enough money to choke off the drug supply to a trickle...if we get the politics out of the mix and do what's right for our citizens for once...look at what legalization's done to the populations in Europe...our brightest minds and best talents will go down the tube...and America will go down with them...we've done enough to destroy our children's futures...and our grandchildrens'...I'm for FIGHTING the war...all-out...like America hasn't fought in decades...we can win it...and make gun violence so expensive to the enemy that they'll give it up...or die because of it...we need bare-knuckled fighters, not quitters...
 

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Whether drugs are illegal or legalized...they are a huge problem.
Legalizing them won't make crime and violence go away.
Addicts are not only self-destructive...they bring wreck and ruin wherever they go. They're a plague on their families, neighborhoods, local businesses and property values.
This whole libertarian approach to drug-use ignores the fact that the cost of it falls on our social services, hospitals and public healthcare system.
It is these that are required to care for and clean up after these folks.
Why should society's safety net be used for those who just want to get wasted??
Go to the parks, corners, allys, vacant lots and foreclosed homes where addicts hang out.
You'll find discarded needles, vials, sewage, toxic/dangerous chemicals (e.g. meth labs)...addicted, abused and neglected kids...etc., etc., etc.
Frankly, I'd rather have these folks off the streets. They'll live longer. And the quality of life for the rest of us will be better.
Let's face it... 'self-medication' is tremendously expensive no matter what route is taken in dealing with it.
 
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