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Letter: Criminalization Isn’t the Answer

To the Editor:

Reading Ben Barber’s op-ed piece (“We’ll Pay a High Price for Legalizing Pot,” Dec. 20) reminded me once again of the hilarity of listening to educated people saying incredibly stupid things.

Having smoked pot for almost 40 years — although not at all in the last 10 — leaves me ­eminently qualified to speak to the horrible debauchery of one more late-night munchy attack on the fridge. Just reading this account will reveal to the general public the incredible amount of dementia and brain loss I have suffered as a result of cannabis sa ti va.

But really, Mr. Barber, does diminished intellectual capacity matter to the terminal cancer patient or the neuro-muscular disease sufferers drowning in their own fluids? And what of the cost to taxpayers of incarcerating people convicted of marijuana crimes — an estimated 17 percent of the 3 million people in the federal penitentiary system?

The real cost for marijuana and all illegal drug laws has been the incredible destruction of lives and families due to trying to legislate morality.

Barber wouldn’t believe who’s doing heroin. All the drug laws have not done one thing to lessen this tragedy. All they have done is put one more money in the pusher man’s hand.

What we need to do is legalize, regulate and educate.

Matt Cardillo

Sharon

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