I agree with Warren Kinsman’s letter regarding the legalization of drugs. The sad truth is that addicts are getting what they need through a violent, corrupt, worldwide system that makes everyone on any drug route subject to violence and corruption at all levels.
The real truth is that addicts are already getting what they need and want. They are just getting it at our expense in terms of the quality of life of those who live in trafficking areas. The price we pay for the mentality of cops and robbers is astronomical, not in terms of money (although we pay a high price in that), but more in terms of life quality.
Drug trafficking invites organized crime. It invites corruption. It invites violence.
The idea that all of a sudden addicts would multiply because drugs were legal just does not make any sense at all. They are ALREADY getting the drugs! We are not making a dent in the trafficking of drugs, or anything else for that matter. We are just playing an expensive game of cops and robbers.
With the same money put into drug treatment that we put into law enforcement, we would be far better off. Not just financially, but in terms of our quality of life.
I also agree with Warren that it is not likely to happen in my lifetime because we get in this moralistic battle instead of looking at the practical.
Right now the Asemblea Legislative is approving a new tax on cigarettes. A good idea, probably. However, the real truth is that smugglers will simply start a new business in Costa Rica, smuggling cigarettes from Nicaragua or another Central American country and we will have enriched, again, the lives of those who cross the borders with drugs. Our mentality is making them rich and powerful and eroding the quality of life for everyone else.
Time to stop and think. What would happen if we took the money out of the game and gave it to governments, in the form of taxes, to treat addiction?
At least have the willingness to actually think about it!
Quepos and Manuel Antonio