Sunday, July 23, 2006

SWAT Redux

Radley Balco has e-mail responses to his SWAT paper. The lonely libertarian actually took the time to read the report this week, and just had a few more thoughts.

As Balco has mentioned, much of the criticism of the report has attempted to point out that the botched raids mentioned in the report are actually a small percentage of the overall number of SWAT team raids conducted around the country. But as Balco points out, the report is not meant to be a complete chronicle of every single botched drug raid.

But really, any sort of statistical analysis is beyond the point. The real issue is whether the war on drugs is worth the cost that Balco has chronicled. Is fighting the war on drugs worth the cost of innocent lives? Drug use can be a dangerous choice, but it is just that, a choice. Drug use is not an inherently violent activity- Drug prohibition, and the war on drugs create situations in which violence is allowed to flourish and escalate, first through black market competition, and then through law enforcement response to the black market violence. To the lonely libertarian it seems very simple that protecting ourselves from bad choices is not worth the cost of the innocent lives lost in the war on drugs.


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