Retired Judge Jim Gray speaks out on the failed drug war in an L.A. Times interview

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My friend and fellow Libertarian, retired Judge Jim Gray, appeared on page two of the L.A. Times front section today, in an interview with Times columnist Steve Lopez, regarding our nation’s failed drug war.  Gray summed up his feelings thusly:

“Please quote me,” says Jim Gray, insisting the war on drugs is hopeless. “What we are doing has failed.”

Here are a few more excerpts from Lopez’ column:

As far as I can tell, Gray is not off his rocker. He’s not promoting drug use, he says for clarification. Anything but. If he had his way, half the revenue we would generate from taxing and regulating drugs would be plowed back into drug prevention education, and there’d be rehab on demand.

“Politicians get reelected talking tough regarding the war on drugs,” says Gray. “Do you want to hear the speech? Vote for Gray. I will put drug dealers in jail and save your children.”

I had gone to visit Gray in part to discuss his support for a bill introduced last month by Democratic San Francisco Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, who is calling for marijuana to be regulated and taxed much like alcohol.

Mexican drug lords are better armed than police and killing thousands who don’t buy into the corruption — with the violence crashing our borders — and American enemies abroad are financed by the opium trade.

Ten days ago I visited a Los Angeles elementary school where students practice dropping to the floor and making themselves as flat as pancakes to avoid stray bullets from the gang-infested neighborhood, and drugs play a role in that violence. On Wednesday I strolled through downtown Los Angeles and marijuana smoke filled the air, a mocking reminder of the impossible task of eradicating drugs, despite the trillions spent and the thousands of people we’ve locked away in our jails and prisons.

Bravo to Hillary Rodham Clinton, says Gray, for admitting last week that American demand for drugs is responsible for the bloodshed in Mexico.

“But she got the facts right and the solution wrong,” he says, just as everyone else has in a war that’s been escalating for decades.

Click here to read the rest of Lopez’ column.  Click here to check out Gray’s Daily Pilot columns.  Kudos to Gray for sticking to his guns.  The more time passes the more obvious it is that Gray has always been right about this issue.


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