America's War On Drugs

1528 Words Aug 16th, 2015 7 Pages
America’s war on drugs has failed. After millions of dollars and untold man hours spent enforcing the prohibition of illegal drugs, there is little, if any, success to show for it. Illicit drugs are still available on most American street corners, drug usage rates have not decreased, and the scourge of drug related violence continues to spread like wildfire. Sadly, the war on drugs has also resulted in the incarceration of millions of Americans for petty possession offenses and has created a black market for illicit drugs upon which criminal organizations, such as the Mexican cartels and even the Taliban, thrive. Decriminalization of drugs is the only way America will ever be able to eradicate its drug problem. Imagine a country where drug users were treated instead of imprisoned, where drug usage rates perennially fell, and where diseases such as AIDS and Hepatitis C were in decline. This isn’t a fantasy, drug decriminalization policies have been proven to work and they’re America’s only answer to the drug epidemic. The official “war on drugs” was declared in 1982 by President Ronald Reagan and many government assets were put into play among all facets of society (Bagley, p. 1). The US military’s role in interdiction efforts increased, Congress approved tougher legislation against drug offenders, and public schools across the country were saturated with anti-drug educational materials from Nancy Reagan’s “Just Say No” campaign (Bagley, p. 1). In spite of all this, drug…
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