Hillary Corgey" />
side bar
Tuesday, September 26, 2023


Drug agreement misses bigger picture

The United States and Mexico have a major problem with drug trafficking. Women are dying from drug wars in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico gangs pushing drugs in the streets of major cities are killing people and drug cartels keep a stranglehold on the border.

To help fight drug trafficking and organized crime, the U.S. struck an agreement with Mexico called the Merida Initiative, in which Mexico will be provided with $400 million for training and equipment. Although the Merida Initiative looks like it may work, it is another failed policy in the ridiculous War on Drugs.†

Critics rightly call The Merida Initiative "Plan Mexico" because of its similarity to Plan Colombia, an anti-drug smuggling program that led to repression of leftist groups and did nothing to curb cocaine production. The Mexican military and police are notorious for their human rights abuses and cruelty.

In the 2006 Atenco Riots, police sexually assaulted 26 women and pulled people out of their houses to beat them. In Michoacan, Mexico a man was tortured and beaten by soldiers for mistakenly being identified as a drug kingpin. Teacher strikes in Oaxaca, Mexico have led to "disappearances."

The police are not just participating in torture, they are trained with torture. Videos have emerged from Leon, Mexico showing police officers subjected to rolling around in their own vomit and having water squirted up their noses. Police chief Carlos Tornero justified the torture by saying it mimicked real-life situations the police officers would have to face. Although much of the police force accepts bribes from drug traffickers, there is no reason to give corrupt organizations more funding to repress and torture innocent people.

The Mexican drug cartels receive billions for their participation in selling illegal drugs. Most of the demand comes from the U.S. There is no possible way the demand can be reduced unless there are rehabilitation programs for drug offenders and real education efforts that do not involve "Just Say No" or scare tactics like airing commercials that claim buying marijuana supports terrorism.

The Merida Initiative focuses on the supply of illegal drugs. This is an awful idea because, if the Mexican drug cartels are quashed, then operations will simply be moved to another country. When methamphetamine labs were widely shut down in the U.S., they later moved to Mexico. Mexican drug cartels took over distribution and transportation in place of the Colombians after government crackdowns.

Although Mexican President Felipe Calderon has received massive support for fighting drug traffickers, the drug issue is multifaceted and cannot be addressed by only attacking drug dealers. Most of the drug policies coming out of the United States look great on paper and win votes, but are overly simplistic and do not address real problems.

The Merida Initiative just garners support for Calderon and makes the U.S. appear tough. It will do absolutely nothing to alleviate the problems of illegal drug use and violence on both sides of the border.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to Top ↑
  • Sign up for our Email Edition

  • Polls

    What about UH will you miss the least this summer?

    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...