San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom proclaimed the nation’s war on drugs a total failure and insisted the crime rate would go down if the government spent money on treatment as opposed to jailing people with drug problems.
“If you want to get serious, if you want to reduce crime by 70% in this country overnight, end this war on drugs,” he told reporters at City Hall on Thursday. “You want to get serious, seriously serious about crime and violence end this war on drugs.”
In a ten-minute tirade about the drug war’s failure, Newsom told reporters that most politicians – including those in his own party – just don’t have the guts to admit the obvious.
“It’s laughable that anyone could look at themselves with a straight face and say ‘oh,we’re really succeeding.’ I mean it’s comedy. And as I say, shame on my party, the democratic party, because they don’t have the courage of their private thoughts, because we don’t want to appear weak on this topic,” Newsom said.
Alcohol prohibition ended when mayors like New York’s Fiorello LaGuardia spoke out about how it was nothing more than a war on minority communities. Drug prohibition will end the same way, as mayors from San Francisco to Newark are all starting to say the same thing.
David Guard has a recap of the incarceration hearing from Thursday.
[Via Pete Guither]