Joaquin Guzman, known as El Chapo and head of the world’s most powerful drug cartel, has been captured in Mexico. Guzman’s Sinaloa cartel has terrorized residents along the Mexican-US border for years. They are notorious for their brutal executions of anyone who does not obey their orders. Some people have been tortured and killed just so Guzman’s men could steal their vehicles.
Guzman was arrested once before, but was able to escape in 2001. So the US government wants him extradited here so he can be confined in a super-max prison until trial. But the Mexican government seems reluctant to do that.
Reports are that the cartel already has new leadership and continues smuggling drugs into the US.
Yesterday a television commentator said that if drugs were legalized there would not be cartels like Guzman’s. What a simplistic idea! Guzman is one of those people who are sometimes called “evil personified”. He does not act that way just because drugs are a source of income for him. Does this commentator think drug lords would just get legitimate jobs if drugs were legalized? There is evil in the world, some people are always trying to find ways to gain power, money and/or prestige, and seem to enjoy hurting others.
If drugs become legal, there are always other items that can bring big money on the black market. The world’s black market economy is not based just on items that are illegal. Scarce items or those that are hard to obtain because of government over-regulation are traded under the radar too. In the late 1970’s I lived in Arizona and lots of Americans were traveling into Mexico to obtain the then-popular drug laetrile, which is illegal in the US.
Guzman’s capture may bring a bit of relief for Mexicans along the border. But US Drug Enforcement cannot relax. The Sinaloa cartel is still at work.