I find, as I get older, that my experiences along the way have firmed up some opinions. Some of these opinions are good perhaps, and some are probably not so good, but they are mine nevertheless and I will leave it to others to form their own opinions about which is which. I have perception problems with the outside world and emotional ties to my own ideas that sometimes prevent me from seeing the consensual reality we call truth, so you are on your own in this regard. That notwithstanding; I manage to stumble along in my day to day life trying to separate the true from the false as best I can, knowing full-well that I could be wrong at any time.
Why I tell you this is because I have recently stumbled across an item that I believe has enormous potential to raise people’s awareness about where they live and what kind of society we have become. It is a documentary film titled “The House I Live In” by director Eugene Jarecki, and it won the top honor for Documentary Films at the “Sundance Film Festival” in 2012. I never said I was fast and, as usual, I’m just now discovering this film many months after it’s triumph at Sundance. Oh well, everything in its’ own time. The film is part history and part current events as it takes us through the underlying assumptions, decisions and ramifications of the “War on Drugs” as it has developed over the last forty years. The law of “Unintended Consequences” runs rampant throughout this narrative as well-intentioned people struggle to legislate behavior they do not understand, and spend money they do not have, to reach goals that are unachievable. The persistence and perniciousness of the underlying belief system has to be seen to be believed. It shows how little; human concepts have evolved, since medieval times and the dangers inherent in codifying them into law. I urge every citizen of the US to watch this film and, more importantly, see to it that their elected representatives watch it as well.
I realize that many readers of this blog live outside the United States and may not be US citizens, but I assure you the “War on Drugs” has had an impact upon your lives as well. If you are a citizen of a country with a participatory form of Government, I urge you to get a copy of this film and pass it along to your local lawmakers. If you live in a place that does not value citizen input or worse, represses it, please know that we are all in this together and you will not be forgotten.
Here is a link to the official trailer. and here is a link to a place you can see and/or purchase the film online. It also airs on US national television on the PBS “Independent Lens” program Monday April 8, 2013 at 10:00 PM EST. Check your local listings for the time where you live.
Also; if you are the proactive type and believe that good communication leads to better government, please feel free to forward this information along to your elected officials. If the US Congress is serious about balancing the Federal Budget, the 1 trillion dollars in savings that would be shortly realized by discontinuing the “War on Drugs” would go a long way toward that goal. We might even be able to afford proper healthcare for the mentally ill and addicted people we currently warehouse in various correctional facilities throughout North America. What a concept!