Civil war has raged in Colombia nor nearly half of the twentieth century and there is currently scant hope for any quick resolution of fighting. Well over a million Colombians clad in white and cheering, ‘No More Kidnapping” marked their independence day on Sunday with marches and concerts demanding freedom for hostages still held by leftist rebels.In some 40 cities across the land, people shouted “freedom” as they marched and sang in hope for an end to bloodshed. In Paris, newly freed hostage Ingrid Betancourt addressed rebel leader Alfonso Base with a plea: “Understand that it’s now time to stop spilling blood, that the time has come to exchange those rifles for roses.”
The people of Colombia are tired of drug lords and so-called “leftists” whose only apparent concern for the masses is how much money its leaders can amass for themselves. Perhaps, it is also time to re-evaluate the criminalization of drugs and seek new ways to end drug lords by the simple act of ceasing to make trafficking in drugs a criminal offense.