The NFL drug policy is a remnant of the "war on drugs" rhetoric that was so popular 30 years ago, an approach that has contributed to the U.S. becoming the world's leader in incarcerating its own citizens.
The Attorney General understands that his authority to radically change drug policy is limited. His proposed reforms amount to us learning to crawl before walking when running is the goal. The radical change in drug policy will need to come from Congress. One such option is drug decriminalization.
Only about a quarter of the thousands of heroin-related deaths each year are caused by heroin alone. The vast majority of these deaths - 70 percent or more – result from combining heroin with another sedative, usually alcohol. By focusing exclusively on heroin, we are missing an important public health education opportunity to decrease drug-related accidents.