Say goodbye to the War on Drugs.
Gil Kerlikowske, the Obama Administration’s new Drug Czar, told the Wall Street Journal in his first interview last week that the moniker, and the crime-and-punishment mentality behind it, is being dropped.
The kinder, gentler approach will help break down the barrier the surrounds the criminal drug culture, Kerlikowske says.
“Regardless of how you try to explain to people it’s a ‘war on drugs’ or a ‘war on a product,’ people see a war as a war on them,” he said. “We’re not at war with people in this country.”
In its place will be a public health approach to the drug problem in America.
Among the initiatives being planned by the White House are an end to federal raids on medical marijuana clinics, federal funding for needle-exchange programs, and more balanced sentencing for possession of powder and crack cocaine.
Additionally, the administration may push for more drug treatment and counseling in criminal cases, according to the Journal article.
Many critics see the current drug policy as responsible for the over-crowding of prisons.
The term “War on Drugs” was first used by the Nixon administration in 1969.