A couple months ago Pat Roberston, the infamous televangelist generally making headlines for blaming catastrophic events on gays and abortions, confused the general public by blurting out something entirely sensible: “I’ve never used marijuana and I don’t intend to, but it’s just one of those things that I think: this war on drugs just hasn’t succeeded. It’s completely out of control. Prisons are being overcrowded with juvenile offenders having to do with drugs. And the penalties, the maximums, some of them could get 10 years for possession of a joint of marijuana. It makes no sense at all."
For a counterargument CNN had to scour the depths of yesteryear’s debased pundit class, passing by the usual arbiters of cataclysmic premonition, most of whom, like Robertson, long ago realized the “War on Drugs” is an abject failure. CNN’s dive into the abyss netted them the pious ramblings of one William J. Bennett, former Secretary of Education and Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, a man whose fingerprints appear all over the heap of legislation that diverted funds from the problematic practice of educating Americans and reinvested them into the lucrative business of locking them behind bars for petty crimes.
What makes the occasional rant by the Bennetts of the world interesting is how uncommon the sentiment is. After all, the President and Attorney General refuse to use the term “War on Drugs” and speak openly about the genius of David Simon. Bill Clinton’s assertion that he didn’t inhale seems ridiculous when compared to the last two Presidents: no one batted an eyelash when Obama said he did inhale (“That was the point.”) and we disregarded the drug problems of George W. Bush’s youth shortly after learning about them.
Read the rest over at Motherboard.