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Tony Newman
Tony Newman is communications director for the Drug Policy Alliance.

Entries by Tony Newman

The Overdose Crisis is Making America Finally Consider Supervised Injection Facilities

(9) Comments | Posted April 8, 2016 | 5:39 PM

There is an overdose crisis in the United States. More people are now dying from overdose deaths than from car accidents. Overdose has become an issue that is being talked about at all levels of government and just last week President Obama launched a...

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Nancy Reagan's Role in the Disastrous War on Drugs

(282) Comments | Posted March 7, 2016 | 11:25 AM

Nancy Reagan, the former first lady and widow of President Ronald Reagan died on Sunday in California at age 94. Front pages around the world are remembering her life. The stories all talk about the powerful love between Nancy and Ronald and her impactful role as first lady. When highlighting...

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Why It's Time to Legalize Drugs

(0) Comments | Posted February 23, 2016 | 9:49 AM

In my experience, good public policy is best shaped by the dispassionate analysis of what in practice has worked, or not. Policy based on common assumptions and popular sentiments can become a recipe for mistaken prescriptions and misguided interventions.

Nowhere is this divorce between rhetoric and reality more evident than...

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If Our Presidential Candidates Think Drug Use Is a Health Issue, Here Are 8 Ways to Prove It

(22) Comments | Posted January 29, 2016 | 3:01 PM

Substance use and abuse touches virtually every family in the United States. The New York Times ran a front page story last week documenting the explosion of overdose deaths throughout the country. 47,000 Americans died from an overdose in 2014 -- more than from...

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Flashback Friday: Fox News Host Megyn Kelly on Drugs

(15) Comments | Posted January 8, 2016 | 9:54 AM

Fox News host Megyn Kelly is everywhere right now, including the current cover of Vanity Fair. The glowing cover story, "Don't Mess with Megyn Kelly, Fox News's Toughest, Brightest Star," will only increase her rise and prominence. Kelly is not only covering the news, but making news...

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60 Minutes Profile on the Drug Czar: What They Got Right -- and Wrong

(3) Comments | Posted December 14, 2015 | 2:43 PM

Last night, 60 Minutes tackled the drug war for a second week in a row when they did a nice profile on Michael Botticelli, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, commonly referred to as President Obama's Drug Czar.

Botticelli comes from a public health...

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The Sickening Use of Young People as Confidential Informants in the Drug War

(11) Comments | Posted December 7, 2015 | 2:04 PM

Supporters of the drug war often claim that we need to wage this unwinnable war to "protect" young people. 60 Minutes ran an explosive piece last night showing one of the many ways that the war on drugs actually endangers young people: the sickening use of young...

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Unprecedented Momentum to End the Drug War: Top Stories of 2015

(5) Comments | Posted December 3, 2015 | 11:53 AM

Over the last few years there has been undeniable momentum to end our country's disastrous war on drugs. Both voters and elected officials are looking for alternatives to the unwinnable drug war. 2015 continued the trend. Here are some of the top stories of the year that give us hope.

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What a Week! Everyone's Hopping on the 'No More Drug War' Train

(61) Comments | Posted October 21, 2015 | 3:22 PM

I have been working at the Drug Policy Alliance for the last 16 years and I have never seen a week like this. It is hard to keep up with all of the big stories about the disastrous war on drugs and the growing effort to end it. Here is...

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Finally, Democratic Presidential Candidates Say Good Things about Marijuana Legalization and Criminal Justice Reform

(31) Comments | Posted October 14, 2015 | 11:43 AM

Last night, during the first Democratic debate, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) became the first major presidential candidate to say that he would support legalizing marijuana if given the chance. Asked whether he would support an upcoming ballot measure on legalization in Nevada, Sanders said:

I suspect I...
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100 A-List Celebs Join Movement to Reduce Prison Population and Reform Mandatory Minimums

(11) Comments | Posted October 5, 2015 | 4:59 PM

Amy Schumer, Steph Curry, Ed Norton, Jesse Williams, Chris Pine, Russell Simmons, and Piper Kerman are among the nearly 100 celebrities calling for reform to our criminal justice system. The stars are joining the campaign led by #cut50, a bipartisan effort to reduce our incarcerated population by...

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GOP Debate Will Honor Reagan and Ignore His Disastrous War on Drugs

(77) Comments | Posted September 16, 2015 | 3:02 PM

Tonight, round two of the GOP presidential debate will be taking place at the Ronald Reagan Library in Simi Valley California. I am fairly confident that there will be glowing tributes to President Reagan and references to Reagan's "optimism" and "strength" and the need to "Make America...

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'The Real History of Drugs' Educates Millions

(15) Comments | Posted August 24, 2015 | 5:46 PM

The United States' longest, unwinnable war is the "war on drugs." Despite decades of arrests and locking up millions of Americans, politicians and PSA's urging us to "Just Say No," illegal drugs are still as available as ever.

But why are some drugs legal and some prohibited?...

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HBO's John Oliver Slams the Drug War on the Regular

(4) Comments | Posted August 3, 2015 | 5:43 PM

For some years now, Comedy Central and HBO have played a huge role in educating people about some of the most important issues of the day. Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Bill Maher, Larry Willmore and John Oliver are all skillful at both educating and entertaining us. They are so impactful...

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Innovative Drug Policies You May Never Have Heard of But Need to Know About

(3) Comments | Posted June 5, 2015 | 4:37 PM

June 17 marks the 44th anniversary of President Richard Nixon's war on drugs. America's longest war has destroyed millions of lives, and turned the U.S. into the world's leading incarcerator with less than five percent of the world's population but nearly 25 percent of its prisoners.

Instead of the "drug-free...

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Lessons Learned: The Journey to Legalize Marijuana and End the Drug War

(64) Comments | Posted May 7, 2015 | 12:11 PM

For the last 15 years I've dedicated my life to ending our country's disastrous war on drugs. It has been an incredible journey, and I am happy to say that seeds that were planted a long time ago are finally bearing some fruit.

When I started my job at the...

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How the War on Drugs Contributes to the '1.5 Million Missing Black Men'

(29) Comments | Posted April 22, 2015 | 5:24 PM

On Monday, the New York Times published a deeply upsetting piece titled, "1.5 Million Missing Black Men."

According to the Times, "Black women who are 25 to 54 and not in jail outnumber black men in that category by 1.5 million. ...For every 100 black women in...

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Young People Need Honest Education About Sex and Drugs

(1) Comments | Posted April 1, 2015 | 3:55 PM

One of the most important jobs of being a parent is to keep our kids safe. Two crucial and possibly difficult conversations parents will have with their children are about sex and drugs.

So what's the best way to address these topics with children?


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NYPD Commissioner Bratton Acknowledges Marijuana Prohibition Responsible for Increased Shootings

(5) Comments | Posted March 3, 2015 | 2:00 PM

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton gave a press conference yesterday on the rising number of shootings in New York City. Shootings in NYC increased 17 percent this year over the same time period in 2014.

So to what should we attribute the increase? According to Bratton and Robert...

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Bill Maher Calls on Obama to End Drug War and Free Drug War Prisoners

(87) Comments | Posted February 23, 2015 | 12:50 PM

Anyone who watches Bill Maher's HBO show, Real Time with Bill Maher, knows that one of his biggest passions is marijuana legalization. Almost every week he talks about our country's absurd war on drugs. Last week he did his best rap ever on the drug war that...

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