April 29, 1996: At
a speech at a Miami high school, President Clinton calls for a war on drugs
-- for the second time. Gen. Barry McCaffrey, the nation's drug czar,
told the Cleveland Plain Dealer on May 1, that "everything the president
has announced is already being done. There's nothing new here."
April 30, 1984: Colombian
Minister of Justice Rodrigo Lara Bonilla, who had crusaded against the
Medellin cartel, is assassinated by a gang of motorcycle thugs. President
Belisario Betancur, who had opposed extradition, announces "We will extradite
Colombians." Carlos Lehder is the first to be put on the list.
The crackdown forces the Ochoa family, Escobar, and Oscar Rodriguez Gacha
to flee to Panama for several months. A few months later, Escobar
is indicted for Lara Bonilla's murder and names the Ochoas and Rodriguez
Gacha as material witnesses.
May 1, 1972: Nobel
Prize winner for economics Milton Friedman is quoted in Newsweek:
"Legalizing drugs would simultaneously reduce the amount of crime and raise
the quality of law enforcement. Can you conceive of any other measure that
would accomplish so much to promote law and order?"
May 1, 2003: The Illicit
Drug Anti-Proliferation Act of 2003 (IDAPA) is signed into law, among other
things amending a section of the Controlled Substances Act to target rave
May 2, 2001: The Louisiana
Senate, voting 29-5, passes sweeping legislation to bring relief to an
overflowing state prison system, including ending mandatory prison time
for possession of small quantities of drugs.
May 3, 1994: Dear Abby
states publicly in her column that "Just as bootleggers were forced out
of business in 1933 when Prohibition was repealed, making the sale of liquor
legal (thus eliminating racketeering), the legalization of drugs would
put drug dealers out of business. It also would guarantee government
approved quality, and the tax on drugs would provide an ongoing source
of revenue for drug-education programs."
-- END --
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