We have an opioid crisis in Maine, as evidenced by the number of overdose deaths.

President Richard Nixon declared “The War on Drugs” on June 18, 1971. That’s over 45 years ago! It didn’t work. It didn’t work for Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan (“Just say no”), George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush or Barack Obama. It’s exceedingly unlikely that “The War on Drugs” will work for either President Trump or Gov. LePage.

Let’s try a new approach. The only reason drug peddlers are drug peddlers is to make money. Let’s take away the money. Let’s go after the drug peddlers’ income. Let’s put the drug dealers out of business by making all drugs legal! No money, no drug peddlers, less crime.

If a user needs a fix, they can go to the hospital or clinic, where drugs will be free. If they’re embarrassed about their drug addiction, they can drive to a state where drugs are illegal and the supply is plentiful.

I’m not the first to think of this. Google “Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.” A lot of smart, experienced law enforcement personnel have been at this approach since 2002. It works.

Peter Dixon

Cape Elizabeth

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