In fiscal 1996 Federal, State, and local governments spent more than $120 billion for civil and criminal justice, a 73% increase over 1995. For every resident, the three levels of government together spent $454. In fiscal 1996 State and local governments combined spent 85% of all justice dollars; the Federal Government spent the rest.
Who would believe that a democratic government would pursue for eight decades a failed policy that produced tens of millions of victims and trillions of dollars of illicit profits for drug dealers; cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars; increased crime and destroyed inner cities; fostered widespread corruption and violations of human rights and all with no success in achieving the stated and unattainable objective of a drug-free America?(source; see also his classic 1972 Newsweek essay and his 1989 Open Letter to Bill Bennett in the Wall Street Journal.)
If the zeal to eliminate drugs leads this state and nation to forsake its ancient heritage of constitutional liberty, then we will have suffered a far greater injury than drugs ever inflict upon us. Drugs injure some of us. The loss of liberty injures us all.(Cresswell v. Florida, 1990: source)
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