Essay on Drug Prohibition – The solution that never worked

Essay on Drug Prohibition – The solution that never worked

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Countries have been making drugs illegal over the years for varieties of reasons - be it to combat a perceived moral or health epidemic, to single out certain groups of people, or to reflect religious influences. Even when some drugs do not present notable health dangers, governments ban them. While there are many drugs that are unhealthy when abused, the drug policies around the world, particularly the United States, are inconsistent and oppressive. Drug laws were supposedly created for the good of society, but the prohibition of drugs only serves to cause problems, violence, and unrest.
Starting from a historical standpoint, we can see that past endeavors to ban substances were often motivated by discrimination and racism. Drug Prohibition: a Call for Change recalls that “The history of drug prohibition in Australia and elsewhere is shrouded in ignorance, bigotry, racial prejudice and false assumptions” (Wodak and Owens, 11). Attempts at controlling drug use are more accurately attempts at trying to control sectors of the population, those that are perceived to be drug users. In the 1930's, states in the southwest began passing laws to ban marijuana, fearing that the influx of Mexican immigrants (who brought their Mexican cannabis along with them) would take away jobs during the Great Depression. The marijuana laws provided an excuse to arrest immigrants and keep them unemployed. Other instances of drug laws having motives such as these range far and wide throughout most countries with similar laws.
Prohibiting substances puts them into the realm of criminal influence. Illegal substances are unregulated by the government and become prime candidates for organized crime to sell. The drug cartel flourishes and makes incredib...


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...dom of citizens from invasive laws are only some of the benefits that amending drug policy can bring. Allowing people to be more free, not the contrary, is leading the way towards a bright future.



Works Cited
Lynch, Timothy. After Prohibition: an Adult Approach to Drug Policies in the 21st Century. Washington, D.C.: CATO, 2000. Print.
New York County Lawyer's Association. Report and Recommendations of the Drug Policy Task Force. Rep. Oct. 1996. Web. 14 Nov. 2010. .
"Sinaloa Cartel: Responsible for 84% of "narco" Homicides." Borderland Beat. 31 Oct. 2010. Web. 14 Nov. 2010. .
Wodak, Alex, and Ron Owens. Drug Prohibition: a Call for Change. Sydney: University of New South Wales, 1996. Google Books. Web. 14 Nov. 2010.

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