Drug War Claims Four Lives in 24 Hours

If anyone had any doubts as to the major cause of violence in Baltimore, yesterdays events in Northeast Baltimore should allay them. The drug war has claimed 4 more lives in Baltimore City, and most likely played a part in a large number of the 57 murders so far in the city this year.

Via The Sun:

In Lauraville, a gunman shot into a car on a quiet side street hitting two people in what police say was the latest chapter of an ongoing turf war over the sale of marijuana. The victims' car careened down the street, slammed into a parked vehicle and triggered a pileup that startled residents. One of the men who was shot died.

Thats right, over POT sales. A drug that can basically be legally purchased on the West Coast is highly illegal in Maryland, and look what we get for it. Dead young men and no reduction in the availability of marijuana. It's disgusting really.

The shootings on List and Cliftmont avenues occurred 2 1/2 miles apart about 8:15 p.m. Bealefeld said police were aware of simmering tensions between rivals and tried to defuse them by talking with those involved, days before the shootings occurred. He said police also had deployed extra officers to the two areas in an attempt to prevent violence.

Police did everything they could, apparently, but it just wasn't enough. This is the sad reality of the cut-throat drug trade we have created through our misguided drug policies. Bitter rivals fighting to sell an extremely valuable product. Of course, the illegality of the product is what MAKES IT SO PROFITABLE and forces it onto the street instead of keeping it inside of the pharmacy or in the garden. I am not sure how to make the logic clearer, our drug policy is directly responsible for this violence.

Authorities said the shooting on List Avenue was connected to two feuding drug gangs, who some residents said were vying for crack cocaine distribution along Harford Road. Police were deployed in the area along Harford Road, but the shooting happened about four blocks west.

Drugs again, gangs too. With all the talk about gang violence, I wonder when the discussion comes in about how these gangs make their money? Could it be from drug sales? No one is asking, no one cares. Its all about guns and getting "guns off of the street". This is silliness. The problem isn't guns, its drugs, and more to the point, the illegal drug trade created through our prohibitionist policies. We have created the most profitable illegal market in the world, and we have no hope of shutting it down short of forcing it into legitimacy. Then we will see an end to the violence. When it is no longer attractive or profitable to sell drugs illegally, the violence will fall. The way to do this is to legalize drugs and create a legitimate market.

I feel like I have written that paragraph many times in slightly different forms. Its easy to repeat the same position when the same sorts of murders keep happening, motivated by the same drug trade. Our inability to acknowledge the truth is both disturbing and depressing. The murders will keep coming, and those in law enforcement and in the city council will continue to ignore the solutions that are staring them right in the face.

1 comment:

FreeMarket said...

POW! Right in the kisser! I don’t know why more people aren’t motivated by the arguments for the legalization of drugs. What is gained by making drugs illegal? Nothing. What could be gained by a legal market in drugs? A lot, and not just for users of drugs. We would have a much safer and freer society, which everyone benefits from.