Drug Prohibition


The Federal Government, while trying to protect us from our human nature, developed harsh anti-drug policies with the hope of eradicating drugs. At the time, these policies seemed simple enough: we will impose penalties on those who use substances illegally, we will intercept drugs coming from other countries while ending all drug cultivation in the States, and we will even try to prevent foreign governments from growing these substances. The idea of the Drug Prohibition surely made sense: lower demand of drugs by law enforcement, and reduced supply through domestic and international means. Unfortunately, the Drug Prohibition led to heavy costs, both financially and otherwise, while being ...

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The estimated cost to the United States for the "War on Drugs" is $200 billion a year or an outstanding $770 per person per year, and that figure does not include the money spent by state and local government in this "war" (Evans and Berent, eds. xvii).
The second cost of this "war" is something economists call opportunity costs. Here, we have two limited resources: prison cells and law enforcement. When more drug crimes take up law enforcement's time and when more drug criminals take up cells, less ability to fight other crime exists. This becomes significant when an estimated 35-40 million Americans use drugs per year. In 1994, law enforcement arrested some 750,000 people on drug charges, and of those 750,000, 600,000 were charged merely with possession. Sixty percent of the prison population is drug offenders (Wink). The police, therefore, most work to find these 35 million "criminals," thereby exhausting their resources. Also, in major urban centers, the number of drug offences ...

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since the countries involved are growing less and less complacent to deal with the losses of sovereignty that they are incurring. Drug Prohibition not only plays out on the American stage, but is a focal point of US relations with the countries of Latin America. So, as each of these countries has to pay the costs of Yankee Imperialism, the tension between neighbors is increasing.
The first of the tensions comes from Colombia. Unfortunately, our crusade against drugs has caused the famous cartels of South America and, especially, those of Colombia. Many wonder if we are justified in putting pressure on these countries just to slow the drug trade. The deaths of thousands of innocent ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 10/26/2006 02:56:02 AM
Category: Legal Issues
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 4751
Pages: 18

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