Reader: Ending ‘war on drugs’ could improve police relationships

To the editor:

This is a response to the letter entitled “Police officers need support, better training, higher funding” by Jameson Brown in the May 31 edition of the Call.

I think that the events in Ferguson reveal the polarization of support for the police, with whites supporting them and African Americans not supporting them.

Mass incarceration as a result of the “war on drugs” has hurt educational and employment opportunities for African Americans and made them fear and hate the police who arrest them.

Also, police arrest people for nonviolent offenses, such as shoplifting, defacing property, using fighting words, et cetera; and they can arrest people for routine traffic violations.

And these arrests tend to affect African Americans more.

If we want the police to have more support, we can start by changing our laws: Get rid of the war on drugs and stop arresting people for nonviolent offenses.

Also, instead of criminalizing our drug problem, we should have treatment options.

If we can make these changes, we are on our way to being a better community.

Michael Nolan

Crestwood

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