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Bob Dole Faces The Drug War

Let the Dialogue Begin

This is Dark Cloud on Wednesday, October 09, 1996.

Nothing underlines our failed drug policy more than Bob Dole’s statements on the subject. Exhibiting almost total ignorance of their appeal and the realities of the problem, Dole compounds the horror by chatting about using the National Guard as border guards and police. This is such a stunningly stupid idea that only the marginally intelligent people can comment on it. So, here I go.

First, there is a drug problem. Mostly involving the legal drugs, alcohol and nicotine. The social damage caused by them dwarfs anything else, but of the illegals or semi-illegals, marijuana must be the most prevalent. Whatever health problems or addictive qualities it may or may not have, pot is socially safer - based on behavior - than booze. Like alcoholics, who are convinced a shower, parted hair, clean clothes, and a mouth mint compensates for their iguana eyes, booze breath, and skin resembling that stuck on from a flayed corpse, pot heads can become so dependent on the stuff for mood control that only the totally unobservant can miss the signs: slow, restricted thinking and inappropriate attention spans. Regardless, that pot is in any way a legal issue for adults is simply absurd.

The harder stuff, be they opiates or speed, have provided a culture of violence, but whether this is mostly due to their outlaw status or the induced behavior is anyone’s call. Nonetheless, a substantial plurality of Americans use them. For a government to claim to protect citizens from themselves is a questionable endeavor, and this insertion of the military into civilian life is a most interesting call by Dole, who claims government is too intrusive now. His moronic chant of “Just don’t do it” reflects his easy assumption that it is evil outsiders who get the children hooked against the heroic efforts of parents. In reality, kids relentlessly seek out interesting new things, and Doles's mythical middle class values sometimes don’t provide them. Any kid from a normal family who gets hooked on drugs is testament to lousy parents. Harsh, but despite the huge industry designed to protect the tender sensibilities of voting parents, true. And Dole has to maintain this charade to court their votes. The problem is, he doesn’t know or won’t admit it’s a charade. So he has to call out the Marines, his generation’s solution to everything.

This is the real drug problem. Law enforcement composed of code words for hidden agendas. A plummeting respect for law and its enforcers. Calcifying hypocrisy in children. And - scarily the least problematic - setting up our military to accept wide scale bribery dwarfing anything seen before. It’s not the use of drugs that is the biggest problem - it’s the hypocritical stupidity of Bob Dole and his ilk, who make Nancy Reagan seem like a think-tank.