Drug War: Failure or Success?

Topics: Illegal drug trade, Drug, Heroin Pages: 6 (1927 words) Published: April 27, 2013
Drug War: Failure or Success?

Many people would claim that President Richard Nixon started the war on drugs. Although it is less well-known today that the Nixon Administration also repealed the federal 2–10-year mandatory minimum sentences for possession of marijuana and started federal demand for reduction programs. He also endorsed drug-treatment programs, and that Nixon only made an effort of continuation towards the states original acts of prohibition dating back to 1905-1914. Even with these programs the U.S. still has a high incarceration count for drug related arrest when compared to other countries. So, are these methods effective for reducing addiction, or is there a better alternative to the war on drugs? “Did you know America ranks the lowest in education but the highest in drug use?  It's nice to be number one, but we can fix that.  All we need to do is start the war on education.  If it's anywhere near as successful as our war on drugs, in no time we'll all be hooked on phonics.” (Leighann)

There is a large majority of people arguing good points on either side of this drug war, in which they are opposed with one another, in which one side says, “Drug enforcement is engaged in controlling the spread and remedying the effects of drug abuse.” There are also those that state that these laws and programs are designed to help decrease America’s dependence on illicit substances. The people from the another side of this argument begs to differ, as they claim that the drug war is an utter failure, ex-presidential candidate Ron Paul explains, “This war on drugs has been a detriment to personal liberty and it's been a real abuse of liberty." In another section Ron mentions that, “Our prisons are full with people who have used drugs who should be treated as patients -- and they're non-violent. Someday we're going to awaken and find out that the prohibition we are following right now with drugs is no more successful, maybe a lot less successful, than the prohibition of alcohol was in the '20s" (Ron). Some critics would argue by saying that Ron Paul’s statement is derived from exaggeration but one can admit that there is some truth behind his logic. In retro-spec of Ron Paul’s previous statement, the United States government is proving to be no more successful at preventing the sale and distribution of drugs than the Mafia Dons were when they forbade their members to be involved with the drug trade under penalty of death. New York Don, Paul Castellano had forbidden any of his associates from being involved in dealing with drugs. John Gotti, Castellano’s capo, was secretly involved with the dealings of drugs in the New York area and Gotti, fearing Paul Castellano’s wrath if discovered, had Paul Castellano murdered in an attempt to erase his past unorthodox behavior and violation of the organizations policy. (Castellano) The moral in this case would be that even when someone is discovered of being engaged in drug trafficking and the after math of their action leads to their death it still drives them to take the risk of being associated with that activity, what is to say that the larger majority won’t take these same risk for a lesser penalty. The United States Government should have realized by now that they cannot control an individual’s personal choices by legislation. An example being suicide, as suicide is against the law, but individuals still commit it every day. You cannot logically or legally protect anyone from their own desires or ambitions by passing a law rendering said desires or ambitions illegal.An example being that the abuse of drugs is usually a form of assisted suicide when the subject drug abuser encompasses a hard drug(s). The illegal drug dealer realizes the monetary gain derived from assisting individuals to kill themselves with habitual drug use over an extended period of years. America’s war on drugs has largely focused on choking off supplies of drugs and imprisoning distributorsand users....

Cited: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/04/ron-paul-war-on-drugs-prohibition_n_1183353.html
“Paul Castellano (1915-1985) Assassinated Crime Boss”, Web, 30 November 2012
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