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Zero-Tolerance Raids by Police in Santa Ana

July 03, 1988

Excuse me if I have no sympathy for the young man whose car was confiscated under the "zero tolerance" program because his friend chose to buy a joint on the streets of Santa Ana.

When is he going to realize that there is no moral difference between the casual user smoking a joint and the rock house kingpin mowing down bystanders with automatic weapons fire?

There are many possible approaches to the serious problems spawned by drug abuse in our country. Recent legislative and law enforcement efforts have taken a small step in the right direction. But if we are serious about reducing the demand for illegal drugs, we must enact laws which provide a strong deterrent.

The death penalty for possession or use of drugs would accomplish this. Homes could be searched using an impartial "address lottery" method, and justice would be dispensed swiftly to residents who fail the urine test or in whose home drugs are found. Drug use would be virtually eliminated within a year.

I only hope that one of our congressional representatives has the courage to sponsor such a law. In the race to be tough, tougher, toughest on drugs, surely this legislation would be immune to one-upmanship.

GILBERT DORAN

Costa Mesa

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