Incarceration does not fix drug addiction

Published 6:05 am Thursday, April 19, 2018

Dear Editor,
Dear Fourth and Main, specifically prosecutors, circuit, district and family courts:
In the recent short film from Brave New Films titled “Sentencing Reform: Drug Addiction” (watch for yourself on YouTube or at, Dr. Gabor Mate ( states, “If I had to design a system to keep addiction going on a massive scale, I’d design the present War on Drugs. This is a war on drug addicts.”
Dr. Mate continues, “If there is any evidence that locking people up for ever longer periods of time is reducing drug trade, is reducing drug violence, is reducing drug usage, I’d make a case for it. There is no such case to be made. We’re not incarcerating people for longer and longer because it does any good. We’re doing it for political purposes. We’re not increasing the safety of our children, ourselves or of society. Criminality follows in the wake of increased drug use when the drugs and drug addicts are criminalized.”
Will you join in our crusade?
Who will be strong and stand with me?
Somewhere beyond the barricade
Is there a world you long to see?
Do you hear the people sing?
Say, do you hear the distant drums?
It is the future that they bring
When tomorrow comes
– Les Miserables
Do you hear the people sing , Fourth and Main?
Roger Hartner

Email newsletter signup