Congress' Message to the Nation's Youth: Do Your Drugs Before You Start College


This week Congress approved legislation that will allow college students with drug offenses on their records to receive federal financial aid. Students who commit new offenses after they start school will still lose their aid. As I've said before, I'm no fan of government subsidies for college tuition, whether in the form of grants or in the form of cheap loans. But the change in policy represents modest progress of a sort, inasmuch as Congress irrationally and unfairly singled out drug offenders–but not murderers, rapists, or bank robbers–for this penalty. It is therefore a conspicuous example of the moral confusion that underlies the war on drugs, which routinely punishes possession of politically incorrect intoxicants more severely than predatory crime.