North Korean leader Kim Jong-un notwithstanding, Donald Trump has on numerous occasions praised autocratic heads of state, like Russian president Vladimir Putin, for their “tough” stances on crime, political opposition, and outward displays of nationalism.
Remember during the second presidential debate when Trump threatened to imprison Hillary Clinton?
As if we need more proof the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is an aspiring despot, we learn Trump has for months been talking about his desire to execute drug dealers, like Philippine dictator Rodrigo Duterte does.
“He [Trump] says, ‘When I ask the prime minister of Singapore do they have a drug problem [the prime minister replies,] ‘No. Death penalty’.”
A senior administration official to Axios added:
“He often jokes about killing drug dealers… He’ll say, ‘You know the Chinese and Filipinos don’t have a drug problem. They just kill them.'”
According to five sources, Trump frequently plunges into tirades about how drug dealers are as evil as serial killers, humane approaches to drug reform are ineffective, and the government must teach children they will die if they take drugs so we’ve got to make drug dealers fear for their lives.
Trump may support legislation requiring a five-year mandatory minimum sentence for drug traffickers who deal as little as two grams of the synthetic opioid fentanyl, which can prove lethal in small doses. Current policy states one must deal 40 grams to receive that sentence.
White House senior adviser Kellyanne Conway is leading the administration’s drug policy office. She told Axios that when the president talks about capital punishment as a drug trafficking deterrent, he is referring to drug dealers who sell substances that can cause thousands of deaths.
“The president makes a distinction between those that are languishing in prison for low-level drug offenses and the kingpins hauling thousands of lethal doses of fentanyl into communities, that are responsible for many casualties in a single weekend.”
“There is an appetite among many law enforcement, health professionals and grieving families that we must toughen up our criminal and sentencing statutes to match the new reality of drugs like fentanyl, which are so lethal in such small doses.”
Few believe we should ignore access to drugs in America, but killing drug dealers…?
Image credit: pulse.com.gh