By: Ethan Rutledge
Kudos to the Department of Treasury for finally removing 308 individuals and entities associated with the Cali drug cartel last month. Despite the unsettling tactics previously employed by the cartel to pursue its aims, this development represents a positive step by the U.S. government to put an end to its remarkably disastrous “war on drugs,” which is widely recognized as one of the most ineffective and harmful policies in the history of the federal government.
The federal government should now apply this sort of leniency towards its own citizens, whose lives have been equally ravaged by the noxious consequences of the drug war. In fact, as recent as 2012 over 1.5 million U.S. citizens were arrested for drug related crimes and over 658,000 of those were for simple marijuana possession of any amount. Arrests like these can be detrimental to the future lives of the arrested, as the scarlet letter on their criminal record never disappears. This is entirely unacceptable and its time the federal government acknowledges the ruinous effect this disastrous “war” has had on American citizens in addition to the effect it has on foreign citizens.