You’ve heard of the war on drugs. Perhaps you are one of the few who still believe it has worked to reverse the use of dangerous drugs in our country. Accusations of fraud and tax-payer milking are not unusual when it comes to discussions of the DEA. The latest reversal of more than 158 convictions, bringing the total to 560 reversed drug charges in Philadelphia, is another reason why.

Philosopher and poet George Santayana once commented, “Those who fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them” and no clearer example can be found to prove his dictum than America’s longest war; the ridiculous “War on Drugs.”

As with Prohibition, the War on Drugs has only added to the problems that it was supposed to alleviate. Some drug use may have declined as a result of the government’s efforts, but the cost of the war on drugs has been a huge expansion in government, an incredibly bloated prison system, more violent crime, and much more. All this has occurred while we’ve collectively suffered a reduction in personal freedoms and privacy rights.

A Philadelphia judge has reversed 158 additional narcotics convictions as a result of a long-running probe of seven narcotics officers, all of whom were acquitted of corruption charges.

Public defender Bradley Bridge says that about 560 convictions have now been reversed.

Bridge tells The Philadelphia Inquirer that fewer than half of the squad’s convictions have been reviewed. This means that even more drug convictions are likely to be overturned.

Federal prosecutors accused the veteran officers of stealing large sums of cash and drugs from their ‘suspects’ lying in court when asked about these accusations.

Officer Jeffrey Walker is serving a three-year prison term after pleading guilty and testifying against his former squad members at trial this year.

A jury acquitted the other six who were accused of similar crimes – they all got their jobs back, with the exception of Officer Perry Betts who was suspended and faces dismissal after allegedly testing positive for marijuana.

Who is really fighting this ‘war on drugs’?

This article originally appeared at Natural Society.


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