A Solution for the War on Drugs?

In the Opinion page article "Needed: Multilateral Attack on Drug Trade," Feb. 6, the author reiterates conventional wisdom on illegal drugs and the international drug smuggling industry: crackdown, eradication, use of military force.

We should know by now that drug use and the multibillion-dollar drug trade are unconventional problems that will eventually call for unconventional solutions.

One obvious solution - a panacea to some, a pariah to others - is to legalize drugs. This one act would destroy all smuggling operations and international drug cartels overnight. The money currently wasted by world governments on attempts to stem the flow of drugs could be spent on social and development programs worldwide - including those concerning substance abuse.

Drug abuse is a serious problem, one that demands radical solutions. Prohibition is just one more form of repression, and in this case it is costing us all dearly. R. Scott Durkee, Vashon, Wash.

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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