Fight Drug Abuse, Don’t Subsidize It

Originally Published in New York Times | Full Story Link Here

August 27, 2018

Almost 64,000 Americans died of drug overdoses in 2016, a shocking 54 percent increase since 2012. Dangerous opioids such as heroin and fentanyl contributed to two-thirds of the deaths. This killer knows no geographic, socioeconomic or age limits. It strikes city dwellers and Midwestern farmers, Hollywood celebrities and homeless veterans, grandparents and teenagers.

Remarkably, law enforcement efforts actually declined while deaths were on the rise. Federal drug prosecutions fell by 23 percent from 2011 to 2016, and the median drug sentence doled out to drug traffickers decreased by 20 percent from 2009 to 2016.

The Trump administration is working to reverse those trends. Prosecutions of drug traffickers are on the rise, and the surge in overdose deaths is slowing.

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