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Smard police chief

July 1, 1993

Smard police chief

By M.L. Simon

By M. L. Simon

Smart police chief

We have one very smart police chief in Rockford. In an article published on the AP newswire, our very own Rockford, Ill. Police Chief Jeff Nielsen said that with the recent changes in FBI manpower allocations, he envisions fewer arrests on major drug cases by the FBI.

“While you wish they didn’t have to ( pull agents ), you understand,” Nielsen said. “If a slightly lower arrest rate means they have a higher arrest rate in terrorism, that’s good.”

He made this remark in response to news that the FBI was shifting more than 400 agents from drugs to terrorism.

Last year after the 9/11 attacks, Atty. Gen. Ashcroft said, “We cannot do everything we once did, because lives now depend on us doing a few things very well.” Of course, he really didn’t mean it. The FBI has been very busy in California targeting legal (in that state) marijuana dispensaries. As if keeping the sick and dying from that next toke was more important than keeping aircraft suiciders from crashing into tall buildings.

I do think his statement, at least, is in fact a tacit admission that they were not doing anything too well. I think this is proof positive that while the drug war grinds on, there is no end in sight. We are not yet to the point where they will admit that the prohibition they are enforcing is the cause of most of the crime associated with the drug problem.

I think it is interesting to look back at how myopic drug prohibition made the FBI in the recent past, Raed Hijazi, a confidential FBI drug informant in the early 90s, begged the FBI to look into the activities of al-Qaeda terrorists. All the FBI was interested in was another photo op drug bust. This was reported in the 17 Oct 2001 Boston Herald. This report was too late to prevent 9/11. But the information can be used today to course correct our government.

And course correcting it needs, badly. The FBI is still way over-committed to drugs. Arianna Huffington says that even with the reorganization, there will be more than 2,000 agents still on prohibition and less than 1,600 fighting terrorism. An improvement is not a revolution. And what is badly needed is a revolution.

What is needed is a change in priorities. Drug prohibition can never give us a drug-free society. It is an impossibility. We have been fighting heroin for more than 80 years. Are we any closer to a heroin-free society than when we started? Has it worked out any better than alcohol prohibition? The fact is that prohibition does not solve substance abuse problems. It only adds crime to the mix.

Our police chief is smart enough to see some of this. Very good. Because it takes him out of the ranks of those who believe no sacrifice is too great to keep people off drugs—even a sacrifice of 3,000 Americans by terrorists in one day. It is time to get over our drug war addiction. Lives are at stake. One life that could use some help these days is E.J.’s. Rumor has it that work release for prisoners may be closed in Rockford in the next 2-4 months. E.J. would like to get clemency so he does not have to serve out his time away from his nearly blind mother and his wife. Please write a letter of reference preferably on your company’s letterhead to Representative Chuck Jefferson, 200 S. Wyman, Rockford, IL 61101. You should probably write “re: Edward Pagel” on the left side of the envelope so Chuck can recognize it quickly. E.J. is not a violent criminal and deserves to be back in the community.

If you would like to find out more about what a free country was really supposed to be like, you can read copies of the Constitution, the Federalist Papers, the Declaration of Independence, and other good stuff for free: http://mywebpage.netscape.com/msimon669/index.html.

M. Simon is an industrial controls designer and Free Market Green (c) M. Simon – All rights reserved.

Permission granted for one-time use in a single periodical publication. Permission also granted for concurrent publication on the periodical’s www site.

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