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Open Letter to Lisa Ling

whose documentary about Chicago violence does not even mention the Drug War!!!

by Ballard Quass, the Drug War Philosopher

May 13, 2022

isa Ling never once mentioned the Drug War during her documentary about violence in Chicago. Not once. Surely she knows that it is the Drug War that creates HUGE incentives for drug dealing, thereby facilitating the creation of armed gangs and the violence that comes with it in the form of turf wars. This violence (which killed almost 800 blacks in Chicago in 2021 alone) will never end if we fail to identify the obvious cause.

By failing to identify the true cause of the violence -- namely, substance prohibition -- Lisa is empowering fascists like Trump to start executing black Chicagoans in the name of the hateful Drug War.

Please, Lisa: as liquor prohibition created the Mafia, so substance prohibition has created the modern inner-city gangs. Please say so in your future reportage! As Heather Ann Thompson wrote in The Atlantic in 2014: "Without the War on Drugs, the level of gun violence that plagues so many poor inner-city neighborhoods today simply would not exist."

Lisa missed a real opportunity to get to the truth about the hate-filled drug-war, which gives police carte blanche to treat suspects like scum. That's why the cop who killed George Floyd told the crowd to "just say no to drugs," because it was the Drug War which first gave racist cops like himself the green light to treat suspects like dirt.

The Links Police

Do you know why I pulled you over? That's right, because the Drug War gives me carte blanche to be a noxious busybody. No, seriously, I thought you might be interested in the following related links that show that media types "just don't get it" when it comes to the war on drugs.

Author's Follow-up: March 18, 2023

Lisa has the same problem that Michael Pollan has -- and Bill Clinton and Joe Biden and all modern prohibitionists. They completely fail to recognize all the stakeholders in the drug criminalization process. The only stakeholder they recognize are white American young people. Of course, even if these were the only stakeholders, the obvious answer to such fears would be to educate young people, not to outlaw mother nature in violation of natural law itself. But young people are NOT the only stakeholders when it comes to prohibition. The other stakeholders include

Forgotten Stakeholders in the drug debate

  1. The depressed and anxious who are denied godsend medicines thanks to prohibition.

  2. The academic community, which is censored by drug law and told they can only research substances of which their government approves.

  3. Mexican children who lose their parents to the war on drugs

  4. Patients (including children in hospice) experiencing pain who cannot get adequate relief, thanks to America's demonization of pain medicine.

  5. Residents of inner cities who live in violent "no-go" zones like Southeast Washington, D.C., where bullets fly thanks to the fact that substance prohibition armed these communities to the teeth.

  6. Formerly free Americans who now live in a semi-police state thanks to the militarization of local police forces in the name of "fighting drugs."

The list goes on and on and yet Lisa Ling and company are determined to screw the entire world up if only they can do something to help poor little uneducated American white kids.

Of course, Lisa & co. are not really racist. They just know at some level that to fret for the kids helps them keep this unjust system in place that makes the world safe for capitalism by reducing all social problems to one cause: the superstitious boogieman and scapegoat that modern racist politicians call "drugs."

Why CBS 19 should stop supporting the Drug War
Forbes Magazine's Laughable Article about Nitrous Oxide
COPS: TV Show for Racist Drug Warriors
Open Letter to Variety Critic Owen Glieberman

Next essay: The Ketamine Mirage
Previous essay: Open Letter to Nathan at

More Essays Here

Some Tweets against the hateful war on drugs

What are drug dealers doing, after all? Only selling substances that people want and have always had a right to, until racist politicians came along and decided government had the right to ration out pain relief and mystical experience.
The Drug War is one big entrapment scheme for poor minorities. Prohibition creates an economy that hugely incentivizes drug dealing, and when the poor fall for the bait, the prohibitionists rush in to arrest them and remove them from the voting rolls.
There are hundreds of things that we should outlaw before drugs (like horseback riding) if, as claimed, we are targeting dangerous activities. Besides, drugs are only dangerous BECAUSE of prohibition, which compromises product purity and refuses to teach safe use.
Peyote advocates should be drug legalization advocates. Otherwise, they're involved in special pleading which is bound to result in absurd laws, such as "Plant A can be used in a religion but not plant B," or "Person A can belong to such a religion but person B cannot."
M. Pollan says "not so fast" when it comes to drug re-legalization. I say FAST? I've gone a whole lifetime w/o access to Mother Nature's plants. How can a botanist approve of that? Answer: By ignoring all legalization stakeholders except for the kids whom we refuse to educate.
Now the US is bashing the Honduran president for working with "drug cartels." Why don't we just be honest and say why we're REALLY upset with the guy? Drugs is just the excuse, as always, now what's the real reason? Stop using the drug war to disguise American foreign policy.
Materialist scientists cannot triumph over addiction because their reductive focus blinds them to the obvious: namely, that drugs which cheer us up ACTUALLY DO cheer us up. Hence they keep looking for REAL cures while folks kill themselves for want of laughing gas and MDMA.
There will always be people who don't use drugs wisely, just as there are car drivers who don't drive wisely, and rock climbers who fall to their death. America needs to grow up and accept this, while ending prohibition and teaching safe use.
Why does no one talk about empathogens for preventing atrocities? Because they'd rather hate drugs than use them for the benefit of humanity. They don't want to solve problems, they prefer hatred.
William James knew that there were substances that could elate. However, it never occurred to him that we should use such substances to prevent suicide. It seems James was blinded to this possibility by his puritanical assumptions.
More Tweets

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front cover of Drug War Comic Book

Buy the Drug War Comic Book by the Drug War Philosopher Brian Quass, featuring 150 hilarious op-ed pics about America's disgraceful war on Americans

You have been reading an article entitled, Open Letter to Lisa Ling: whose documentary about Chicago violence does not even mention the Drug War!!!, published on May 13, 2022 on For more information about America's disgraceful drug war, which is anti-patient, anti-minority, anti-scientific, anti-mother nature, imperialistic, the establishment of the Christian Science religion, a violation of the natural law upon which America was founded, and a childish and counterproductive way of looking at the world, one which causes all of the problems that it purports to solve, and then some, visit the drug war philosopher, at (philosopher's bio; go to top of this page)