All wars have reasons against waging them. But Dr. Stephen Frye has 25 to end the latter and to end it now.
In May, Frye, a retired psychiatrist and former medical school professor at the University of Nevada, Reno, finished his book “We Really Lost This War! Twenty-Five Reasons to Legalize Drugs.”
His point is perhaps best summed up in the opening pages of the book, which took him over three and a half years to research and write: “ ‘War on Drugs’ is over. We lost. … This book is a call for peace.”
“What most people don’t realize about their health care is that there are a lot political decisions behind it,” Frye said. “And everything that the government told us about the War on Drugs was a lie.”
Having treated many former chronic pain patients with medical marijuana, Frye said he has come to realize and understand that the United States has taken a large, expensive stake in an unbeatable and unnecessary war.
Frye says that marijuana is not only harmless but is also a treatment for alcoholism, helps prevent Alzheimer’s disease and helps cure and prevent strokes. Even hemp, coming from the same cannabis plant, can be used as an efficient alternative energy source.
“But doctors still know only very little about it,” Frye said, mentioning that much of this conclusive research is found outside of the United States. “Sadly, they only know one fact — that it’s illegal.”
It is this illegality that Frye cites as the main cause of deaths and related violence problems in the United States, explaining that there are far more deaths from street violence related to the War on Drugs than there are actual drug overdoses.
Also, he says, in comparison to the number of deaths in prison or from AIDS or Hepatitis, “drugs are benign.”
“The War on Drugs kills far more people than drugs do,” Frye said. “We ended Prohibition and then moved to drugs. It’s a catastrophe.”
Past marijuana, Frye said he urges for the legalization of all drugs, similar to that of the Netherlands.
Advocating for taxation, regulation and control of all such substances, Frye said the effects are beneficial, much like the Netherlands’ lower rate of drug use — five times lower for hard drugs, two times lower for marijuana use — and a murder rate four times lower than the United States.
“Netherlands has the answer,” Frye said. “What we have to do is legalize everything, otherwise it won’t make a difference.”
A difference, Frye said, that could end societal inequalities at large. He argues that drug use is now the most racist issue in America as “police do not look for drug users on Wall Street, they look for them in the ghettos.”
Frye’s 417-page book, called “The most important book of the new millennium” by Dr. Dean Edell, Frye said he hopes to convince his readers to push for future legislation, adding that this is something America is ready for now.
“I want readers to call their senator and tell them ‘We have to end the War on Drugs,’ “ Frye said. “The country is ready for it. We just need more education about it.”
For more information about Frye’s book, visit his Web site at www.25reasons.org.