The seeds Political Animals sow

Posted on: Mon, 08/29/2005 - 16:24 By: Tom Swiss

Letter to the Editor, Baltimore City Paper, regarding Brian Morton's recent "Political Animal" column, Police State:

So Brian Morton is waking up to the fact that the U.S. is sliding into a police state ("Political Animal", Aug 24 2005). Great. The problem is that this is not a post-9/11 phenomenon, but a consequence of the "War on Drugs" that has been eroding American civil liberties for decades. And the irony is that Mr. Morton himself, in his previous position as spokesman for drug czar Barry McCaffrey, aided and abetted the process of increasing police power so the state could stick its nose into Americans' private choices.

If you're in the social and political mainstream and your lifestyle choices lean more toward Budweiser and Camels than cannabis and psilocybin, until recently it's been a mostly-benign dictatorship. But Americans interested in exercising their freedom to explore political, social, and neurological alternatives have been enduring heavy-handed abuses of police power for decades. The recent blitzkrieg-like bust of a rave in Utah by paramilitary law-enforcement (news of which has been buzzing around the Internet) is just the latest example.

So the increasing power of the police state makes Mr. Morton uncomfortable? Good. Just a little late. It's too bad that all of us have to reap the bitter harvest that he helped sow.