The legalization of drugs has been at the center of interminable debate. Drugs have widely been perceived as a dominant threat to the moral fabric of society. Drug use has been attributed as the source responsible for a myriad of key issues. For instance, it is believed that drugs have exacerbated the already weak status of mental health in the United States in which some individuals suffering from mental illness administer illicit substances such as heroin or cocaine in an attempt to self-medicate. Moreover, drugs are blamed for turning auspicious members of the community into worthless degenerates. Thus, vast efforts have been made to regulate the alleged drug problem through various avenues. For example, programs have been created to steer …show more content…
For example, agencies have been established with the sole intent to manage drug use and distribution and technology has been exclusively developed to detect the presence of drugs. Yet, evidence has indicated that such exhaustive efforts have been relatively unsuccessful. First, it has been assumed that drugs have perpetuated violence in society and based on this rationale, it was believed that by the suppressing the pervasiveness of drugs that incidents of violence would simultaneously diminish. However, reality has failed to align with the expectations that had initially been anticipated. Research findings have suggested that the decriminalization of drugs would result in a less adversarial drug market in which conflicts have tended to arise among dealers as well as between dealers and buyers (Common Sense for Drug Policy, 2007, p. 21). Essentially, although drugs have been held accountable for gang violence and other acts of violence that have occurred within communities, the illegality of drugs indeed may have aggravated the situation. In addition, it has become evident that one of the primary objectives of the war on drugs, which is to limit supply and demand, has been largely ineffective. CSDP (2007) “According to the United Nations, profits in illegal drugs are so inflated that three-quarters of all drug shipments would have to …show more content…
Essentially, the war on drugs has demonstrated to be an exorbitant expense. The federal government in 2002 alone spent $18.822 billion in the form of expenditures such as treatment, prevention, and domestic law enforcement (CSDP, 2007, p. 54). However, given that the drug war has garnered meager results, this investment may be interpreted as a waste of taxpayer dollars. Alternatively, the money that has been allocated to arrest and detain drug offenders may also be a source of contention. CSDP (2007) “Of the 1,846,351 arrests for drug law violations in 2005, 81.7% (1,508,469) were for possession of a controlled substance. Only 18.3% (337,882) were for the sale or manufacture of a drug” (p. 23). Therefore, the individuals who are likely to enter the already overcrowded prisons may be users and the actual not distributors themselves. Thus, prison space that is intended to be reserved for murders and sexual predators is instead being occupied by substance
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isn’t the only thing people believe needs to change; the reasons for arrests have been criticized by many. America incarcerates more citizens for drug related crimes than any other place in the world. Of the roughly 200,000 in federal prison, 52% are being held for drug crimes and only 8% are for violent crimes, such as: murder, assault, and robbery (Waldman, 2013). Many believe that the “War on Drugs” must become less aggressive because of its large contribution to the prison population. The distribution of prisoners by race has also raised concern among Americans.
To understand the War on Drugs one needs to understand the cultural landscape that made the war on drugs advantageous. Ronald
The steep increase in incarceration rates during these years coincides with the Reagan administration’s enhancement of Nixon’s War on Drugs through the Anti- Drug Abuse Act of 1986. One key part of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act is the mandatory minimum sentencing laws for drugs offenses including discrepancies in sentencing between cocaine and crack cocaine. The version of the Anti Drug Abuse Act passed in 1988 provided monetary incentives for police agencies to implement the war on drugs through the Edward Byrne Memorial State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance Program (Byrne Program). These Byrne Program grants, along with civil forfeiture laws passed in 1984 that allowed police agencies to share in drug related assets, provided substantial resources and motivation for state and local law enforcement to focus on the drug
The War on Drugs was purely political. Before the ‘war’ was implemented, illegal drug use was not a prominent issue in society, it was actually declining. The police force just enforced federal orders. Alexander wrote, “ Huge cash grants were made to those law enforcement agencies that were willing to make drug-law enforcement a top priority.” Here, Alexander pinpoints exactly why the police force took part in the War on Drugs.
In this essay, I will discuss the purpose of the War on Drugs. Note, that my knowledge and credibility will come from The New Jim Crow, written by Michelle Alexander. First, I will define exactly the reason why we created the War on Drugs. Next, we will look at the effects that War on Drugs created. Thirdly, we’ll discuss some of the excuses that law enforcement officers did and still do, to “crack down” drugs.
Due to the fact that drug courts are working to reduce crime, the policies and practices of the US government may have to be changed or strengthened in favor of drug courts. For example, in the Journal Do Drug Courts Work? Getting Inside the Drug Court Black Box (Goldkamp, White, Robinson, 2001), the authors say “Nevertheless, these findings also suggest that variation in drug court out comes may be explained by changes in the operation of the drug court and its ability to deliver the treatment and deterrent effects postulated by the collection of components inside the drug court black box”. This clearly shows that in order for drug courts to work and grow in numbers, changes in policies and procedures that are shown to reduce crime need to be implemented everywhere. Weaknesses that can be found in this summary are that all active drug courts in the US did not respond, which could lead to a very different outcome involving the effectiveness of drug courts as a
Instead, the government focused on enforcement and meager approaches such as the “just say no” movement. The government also followed the hype of the media and looked down upon communities infiltrated with drugs as being problematic to the rest of society. The government did little to address the real issues of drug abuse and how to effectively help those impacted. This resulted in legislation being passed, such as the crack vs cocaine discrepancy, that has unfairly punished drug abuse and spread false information about these types of drugs and their users. 6.
Chapter two introduces the policy problems related to the War on Drugs, as well as other policies that banned or limited other use of alcohol and drugs. Authors start with the history of the regulations of mood altering substances that began in colonial times, and then it escalated with “The Father of Modern Drug Enforcement”, Dr. Hamilton Wright. President Roosevelt assigned him to be the first Opium Drug Commissioner of the United States. Dr. Wright saw drugs as a big problem, according to the text the drug prohibitions started with his opinions on limiting drug use. In 1906 the Pure Food and Drug Act was signed and required the labeling of the ingredients of the products.
In his article, “Toward a Policy on Drugs,” Elliot Currie discusses “the magnitude and severity of our drug crisis” (para. 21), and how “no other country has anything resembling the American drug problem” (para. 21). The best way to describe America’s drug problem is that it is a hole continuously digs itself deeper. America’s drug issues were likely comparable to other country’s at one point in time, but today it can be blamed on the “street cultures” (para. 21) that continue to use and spread the use of illegal drugs. These street cultures transcend the common stereotype of drug users, such as low income communities in cities or welfare recipients, and can be found in every economic class and location. They are groups of people who have
The main issue when it comes to drugs in the United States is the inefficient policies and sentencing laws that have been created. Also, the injustices within these policies pertaining primarily to race. Once the “war on drugs” was claimed the only way the government and law enforcement saw fit to handling this skyrocketing issue was to incarcerate offenders. Although this solution worked for a while, other alternatives needed to be made. However, these alternatives were not made and this left the drug policies, sentencing laws, and injustices at a standstill.
The fight against drug use is not just an individual’s effort. Fighting drug use and stopping drug abusers requires a collective effort. State governments’ agencies, nonprofit organizations, health care providers and even friends and relatives must work to reduce the number of people willing to buy and use
The War on Drugs has been criticized for its inability to decrease drug users and drug related crimes. The US government’s methods combat illicit drug crimes have made people question the main motives of War on Drugs. Since the US government declared the War on Drugs asset forfeiture has been widely used by law enforcement agencies to reduce drug criminals influence. Asset forfeiture is effective in tackling illegal drug crimes and funding government agencies, but the laws about asset forfeiture has been controversial due to its questionable profit incentives for law enforcement and inability to protect property owners from unfair seizures. Asset forfeiture is the legal process in which property is seized based on its association with illegal
Today many countries try to regulate the numbers of drugs users as many as they can by using the scary promotions and commercials to attract the attention from people, albeit ineffective. Rather than using the outmoded methods, legitimacy should be announced for all drugs in order that the regulation will process more ease for the government. In this procedure, the government can legislate the limitations for drugs consumption and people will be able to understand drug disadvantages profoundly. Therefore, allowing drugs as ordinary substances will abate the drug consumption. The aforementioned issue, in brief, the drugs is a too danger to leave it as it is so it should be legalized.
Would the decriminalisation and / Legalisation of controlled substances improve or hinder the economic, health and social circumstances of drugs users, their families, communities and society? This essay will briefly outline the current policies on drugs in Ireland and will examine the policies and substance misuse from a European and international perspective; then it will discuss how decriminalisation of drugs and substances can improve or hinder the economic, health and social circumstances of drug users, their families, communities and society in general. Examples of controlled substances in Ireland include cocaine, heroin, methadone, cannabis (full list of controlled substances found in the schedule Misuse of Drugs Act 1977).
As of recent, the war on drugs has been a very often discussed topic due to many controversial issues. Some people believe the War on Drugs has been quite successful due to the amount of drugs seized and the amount of drug kingpins arrested. I believe this to be the wrong mindset when it comes to the war on drugs. The war on drugs isn’t a winnable one so we must do all that is possible to assist those who struggle with drug addiction and decriminalize small amounts of drugs. These minor changes in the way we combat drugs will create significant change and have lasting effects.