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Encyclopedia > Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, or LEAP, is a non-profit, international, educational organization comprised of former and current police officers, government agents and other law enforcement agents who oppose the current War on Drugs. LEAP is modeled after Vietnam Veterans Against the War, an organization which earned its credibility by utilizing speakers who had been on the frontlines of the war they later denounced. Massive mark-ups for drugs, [UK Govt report] Prevalance of drug use 1991-2002 The War on Drugs is an initiative undertaken by the United States with the assistance of participating countries, which is intended to manipulate various aspects of supply and demand for certain biologically active substances. ... Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW) is a tax-exempt Non-profit organization and corporation, originally created to oppose the Vietnam War. ...


Mission statement

The mission of LEAP is to reduce the multitude of harms resulting from fighting the War on Drugs and to lessen the rates of death, disease, crime, and addiction by ultimately ending drug prohibition.


LEAP's goals are: (1) To educate the public, the media and policymakers about the failure of current drug policy by presenting a true picture of the history, causes and effects of drug use and the elevated crime rates more properly related to drug prohibition than to drug pharmacology. (2) To restore the public's respect for law enforcement, which has been greatly diminished by its involvement in imposing drug prohibition. Incorporated on March 16, 2002, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition has grown from five founding police officers to a membership of over 4,500, including 125 speakers living in thirty-eight different states in the United States and eight other countries. [1]

LEAP's main strategy for accomplishing these goals is to create a constantly growing speakers bureau staffed with knowledgeable and articulate former drug-warriors who describe the impact of current drug policies on: police/community relations; the safety of law enforcement officers and suspects; police corruption and misconduct; and the excessive financial and human costs associated with current drug polices.

Board of Directors

LEAP’s Board of Directors is made up of Jack Cole, who retired as a lieutenant after 26 years in the New Jersey state police—14 years in their narcotic bureau; Jerry Cameron, a retired Chief of two Florida towns; Peter Christ a retired police captain from Tonawanda, New York; John Gayder a currently serving police officer with a department in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada; Terry Nelson, a Federal Agent in Border Patrol, US Customs and Homeland Security; Eleanor Schockett, a retired Florida Circuit Court Judge; and Howard Wooldridge a former police detective from a department in Michigan.

Speakers Bureau

All of LEAP's speakers are former drug-warriors; police, parole, probation, and corrections officers, judges, prosecutors, prison wardens, FBI, and DEA agents. LEAP has members and supporters across the United States and in fifty-six other countries. LEAP is a tax exempt, international, non-profit organization, educational entity based in the United States that was modeled after "Vietnam Veterans Against the War." Veterans brought credibility to their cause when speaking out to end the Vietnam War and LEAP has tried to achieve the same credibility when its former drug-warriors speak out against the War on Drugs. LEAP's message demands the attention of the media and resonates with members of law enforcement who question current U.S. drug policies. A nonprofit organization (abbreviated NPO, or non-profit or not-for-profit) is an organization whose primary objective is to support some issue or matter of private interest or public concern for non-commercial purposes. ... Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000...


Membership in LEAP is open to anyone but only current or former members of law enforcement can be board members or public speakers for LEAP.

Legalization vs. Decriminalization

LEAP is a drug reform organization that believes legalized regulation is the only ethical and efficient way to undo the damage caused by the War on Drugs. Decriminalization will create a system in which the criminal market is allowed to thrive with little or no intervention from law enforcement. LEAP believes that this will only exacerbate currently existing crime and violence problems. Legalized regulation would result in a system in which the sale and distribution of drugs is regulated by a government body thereby inhibiting, and eventually removing, the criminal monopoly on the sale of current illicit drugs.

LEAP does support incremental change, which the organization believes ultimately betters the lives of United States citizens. LEAP has supported bills which would decriminalize up to one ounce of marijuana, legalize medical marijuana, and implement harm reduction strategies in communities. According to LEAP, their support for incremental change does not conflict with their stance on legalization because they see these steps as a means to an end and not an end in themselves.


LEAP released a twelve minute promotional DVD to provide further insight into the organization's perspective and role in drug reform. "Anyone concerned about the failure of our $69 billion-a-year War on Drugs should watch this 12-minute program. You will meet front line, ranking police officers who give us a devastating report on why it cannot work. It is a must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with this issue." -- Walter Cronkite. [2]

See also

The prohibition of drugs through legislation or religious law is a common means of controlling the perceived negative consequences of recreational drug use at a society- or world-wide level. ... Massive mark-ups for drugs, [UK Govt report] Prevalance of drug use 1991-2002 The War on Drugs is an initiative undertaken by the United States with the assistance of participating countries, which is intended to manipulate various aspects of supply and demand for certain biologically active substances. ... The Drug Policy Alliance is a New York City-based non-profit organization with a principal goal of ending the American War on Drugs. Its publicly-stated goals include nationwide availability of medicinal marijuana, the creation of drug-related public health measures, ending abuses of asset forfeiture, repealing non-violent... Freedom of thought (also called freedom of conscience and freedom of ideas) is the freedom of an individual to hold or consider a fact, viewpoint, or thought, regardless of anyone elses view. ...

External links

  • Official website



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