ACTION: Say No to US War with Mexico over Drugs

May 28th, 2023 - by Faith Gaye / Win Without War

Congress: Don’t Let the War on Drugs

Become an All-Out War with Mexico

Faith Gaye / Win Without War

(May 26, 2023) — For well over four decades, the US-led “war on drugs” has been a catastrophic failure.

US policies, both foreign and domestic, have deepened violence and corruption across multiple continents and vilified and criminalized immigrants and communities of color — all while doing shockingly little to address substance abuse or support people struggling with addiction.

Normally, when you look at 40+ years of failure, you might consider charting a new course. Not if you’re House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Rep. McCaul or Rep. Lauren Boebart though — they’re ready to double down.

Legislation quietly working through Congress would direct the president to renegotiate the Chemical Weapons Convention and classify fentanyl as a chemical weapon of mass destruction (WMD). This designation would push the war on drugs into overdrive while feeding a right-wing effort to land us into open conflict with Mexico.

Communities struggling in the face of violence and addiction don’t need a rinse and repeat of bad drug policy — and we all deserve better than a Congress that would slow-walk us to an unnecessary and completely avoidable war. That’s why we’re calling on you to speak out today.

ACTION: We need to stop this bad idea in its tracks. Can you add your name to our petition calling on Congress to stop the war on drugs from becoming an all out war with Mexico?

Don’t take it from us: Dr. Andrew Stolbach, an emergency physician and medical toxicologist at Johns Hopkins Hospital, summed up the move to reclassify fentanyl as a WMD succinctly to VICE: “That sounds like a dumb idea.”

“It’s not a terrorist weapon, and I think if we try to treat it like a terrorist problem, if we try to treat it like a weapon of mass destruction, we’re handling it the completely wrong way.”

Dr. Stolbach isn’t alone. Just last week, 158 national, state, and local public health, criminal justice reform, and civil rights organizations pushed back on legislation that would reclassify fentanyl in a way that would open the door for more punitive measures.

Adding fentanyl to the Chemical Weapons Convention would go even further to escalate the “war on drugs” — and the consequences could be destabilizing and devastating to communities across the globe as the war on drugs becomes another endless war.

As the concern around fentanyl has grown, so has fear-mongering rhetoric from police and politicians. But here’s the thing: You can recognize the dangers of fentanyl without bringing the Pentagon into it.

It might seem hyperbolic, but reclassifying fentanyl is part of a GOP-led effort to use more military force in Mexico — one that includes The Authorization for the Use of Military Force to Combat, Attack, Resist, Target, Eliminate, and Limit Influence (AUMF CARTEL Influence) Resolution — which we wrote to you about just weeks ago.

That’s why we’re sounding the alarm once again. The best time to stop a war is before it begins, and activists like us can play a critical role in speaking out against dangerous policy and rhetoric today.

ACTION: Add your name to stop Congress from slow-walking us to an unnecessary and completely avoidable war.

To members of the 118th Congress

I urge you to oppose bills like H.R. 3205, which would add fentanyl to the Chemical Weapons Convention.
Legislation like this only sets the stage to escalate the US-led war on drugs — and brings us closer to launching a disastrous military action in Mexico. If you want to build true security, I urge you to work instead on enacting policies that will actually address substance abuse and support people struggling with addiction.

Thank you for working for peace,

Faith, Shayna, Sara, and the Win Without War team