David Simon, creator of The Wire and MacArthur Genius Award recipient, urges Americans to accept our failure in the War on Drugs:
Addicted is the precise word, too, because as any twelve-step survivor can relate, a sure sign of addiction is when one keeps doing the same self-destructive things and expecting a different result. Surely, we can’t believe any longer that we are preventing much in the way of drug abuse. After forty years and billions wasted, the drugs available on any American corner are purer, cheaper, more plentiful than ever.
Nor can we think that we are still standing behind any moral imperative. What morality remains for a policy that has led to reduced civil liberties for all Americans? What morality is there in imprisoning damaged and vulnerable citizens in numbers that make us the jailingest nation ever, locking down more of our population – by per capita and raw numbers both — than Russia, China, Cuba or virtually any other totalitarian state?