Comment of the Day

Reader: Legalize Heroin and Use "Vice" Tax to Fund Rehab Clinics


A reader's theory about the increasing number of heroin addicts in Denver and beyond prompted a big response.

A lot of the posts featured compassionate or thoughtful discussions of heroin use and abuse.

Others suggested the best ways to deal with the problem.

The following exchange fits into the latter category and turns on questions related to legalization and decriminalization.


Ben Schemel writes:
If that's the case then legalize the heroin and use all "vice" tax to fund rehab clinics. We need to quit looking at drugs like we're going to beet them or addiction is ever going to go away.
Tommy Hayner writes:
Don't legalize heroin just decriminalize it. Rehab clinics are cheaper than jails, doctors are cheaper than district attorneys, and nurses are cheaper than cops...plus all the savings on judges and courts. The money is already there, it just needs to be moved over.
Ben Schemel writes:
I like where your heads at, Tommy.
KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts