Essay Against Drug Criminalization

Topics: Drug addiction, Heroin, Drug Pages: 3 (966 words) Published: July 24, 2013
In the essay, “Legalizing Drugs Makes Matters Worse by James Q. Wilson,” Wilson expresses a view regarding legalizing drugs that it will cause more drug use. He warrants this by using 3 main possible results: 1) Drugs would be cheaper due to the fact that the black market inflates prices for illegal products. 2) Drugs would be much safer to gain possession of because you would no longer be receiving them from sketchy drug dealers, legitimate companies would be selling them. He expresses this by pointing to examples of people being robbed and hurt. 3) Quality price would be lowered due to the ease to obtain high purity drugs. He uses this lower of the cost of drugs to explain why the number of addicts would grow and he does an excellent job of showing why that is a problem. In the essay he is mainly referring to harder-edged drugs like Cocaine, Heroin, Methamphetamine, etc. His arguments don't seem to apply to hallucinogenic or nonaddictive drugs. Although his essay was well thought out, his arguments have some fatal errors.

When Wilson speaks of how drugs would be much cheaper due to the fact that the black market inflates the market, he fails to recognize that its actually the other way around. While a drug dealer can operate out of his house, a legitimate company has overhead costs such as taxes, store upkeep, and labor. A drug dealer also does not need a business license, etc. In Colorado, for example, it costs more to buy marijuana from a dispensary than a sketchy dealer on the street. This is a prime example of this mechanic.

Wilson states that drugs would be much safer to gain possession of if they were legal. This is used as a reason we shouldn't legalize drugs. While it is valid what Wilson stated, it is not true that this is a negative benefit. The lack of being robbed and people being shot over it is not a reason against legalization, it is a reason in favor of legalization. In terms of public safety, according to his argument, it would...
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