A statement by Mary Alice Herbert, Socialist Party Candidate for Vice President of the United States
15 March 2004
As socialists, we should not be drawn into supporting any aspect of the war on drugs--especially any attempt to further militarize our borders. A heightened military or police presence increases racial profiling and intimidation and does little to prevent the flow of drugs. Our prisons reflect the racism of our legal system because, while 85% of drug offenders are white and 15% people of color, 15% of those imprisoned on drug charges are white and 85% are people of color.
This is not really a war on drugs but a war on people. If decreasing drug use in the U S were really the goal, why aren't prevention and rehabilitation programs sufficiently funded? Why isn't addiction treated as a medical problem instead of a crime? Our socialist goals of eliminating poverty and creating meaningful work and space in society for everyone would be the most effective way to eliminate drug use. The need many in capitalist society feel for an escape from the grind of life and the lure of money fuel the drug economy...