"I found through all the arrests I made of people dealing marijuana, heroin, prescription narcotics, and meth I stopped nothing. Law enforcement and the judicial system cannot handle the problem; only legalization and regulation can handle the problem.”.
Carlis McDerment, Jr. is deeply concerned about the effects of drugs on individuals and the effects and costs of drug prohibition on society.
An only child who grew up in the Columbus, Ohio area, he became interested in law enforcement through the 1970’s cop shows of his youth. With that initial interest sparked, Carlis pursued a career in law enforcement, where he eventually spent ten years as a Deputy Sheriff. He hopes to return to being a peace officer soon.
It’s during this time, working in the jail and while on patrol, that he saw firsthand that our drug policies are catastrophic failures on many levels: public safety, police safety, economic, and targeting sick people with health problems. In one instance McDerment notes, “a lady was arrested for growing marijuana for relief from a disease she had. She was found guilty, fined, sentenced to jail, and ordered into a drug rehabilitation program. She wasn’t a criminal; she was growing her own medicine, and not a drug addict.”
McDerment stresses that prohibition’s financial costs have been astounding, noting: “to handle the overcrowding problem counties ship and house inmates in larger jails out of their own counties; thus causing higher costs.” Ironically, in the world of “if you build it they will come,” a larger jail is readily filled and the same problem repeats itself.”
McDerment is passionate about helping society see the whole picture: “Drug prohibition is a bad policy, wrecking lives, the nation and creating more problems than it attempts to solve.”
In his spare time Carlis enjoys playing guitar, specifically the blues and rock. He also enjoys art, gardening, hiking and fishing.