The Pros And Cons Of Victimless Crime

1306 Words6 Pages
Throughout its history, America has maintained the persistent problem of punishing perpetrators of victimless crimes. One of the most substantial and controversial subjects pertaining to this issue is the matter of illicit drugs and their legalization. In recent years, numerous reforms and revisions have been made to previous drug laws, most often in support of legalizing the possession and use of marijuana. Though these changes are necessary, they should be expanded to protect the users of all currently illegal drugs. Prohibition infringes upon the civil liberties of those who are citizens of the United States, and is a direct threat to the values and standards this nation was founded upon. The general public of the United States should be…show more content…
The act of possessing and using illicit substances does not damage anyone other than the person making the decision to do so. By punishing individuals for performing activities that do not infringe upon the basic rights of others, one would in turn be infringing upon that user’s rights. When an individual is put in prison for performing an action of this nature, it is termed a victimless crime. There are a plethora of victimless crimes in the United States judicial system, ranging from being punished for not wearing a seat belt, all the way to the “extreme” of using illicit substances. The legislative system of the United States was founded with the intent to punish those who perform actions that directly violate the rights of others. Victimless crimes seek to punish citizens for hurting themselves, an idea that is entirely ludicrous in…show more content…
During times where crackdowns on drug-related crimes were prevalent, higher rates in crime were almost always observed. During a thirteen year period in which an immense crackdown on drugs was initiated, property crime rates increased by 13.2 percent, homicide went up by 16.2 percent, and robbery skyrocketed to levels 83.3 percent higher than they had been prior (Miller n.pg.). The correlation between more punishment to those committing drug-related offenses, and an increase in crime rates is not a coincidence. When the United States made it more difficult to access drugs, users were forced to pay greater sums of money to have access to these same substances due to their limited supply. This forced those individuals to commit acts of robbery in order to acquire the money needed to afford drugs. The same principle applies to the reasons for all other types of crime that increased, and exhibits how making drugs illegal actually worsens the quality of life for other citizens of the
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