Essay Drug Trafficking, Consequences, and Accountability

1453 Words 6 Pages
The illegal drug trafficking found throughout Latin America is not an issue that can be solved by either a government or an individual alone. Unfortunately, it is also an issue that requires more than one solution in order to solve the problem. Each Latin American state is unique, as are the various citizens who inhabit them. As drug trafficking is a transnational force, Latin American governments often find themselves not only at odds with one another, but with larger political and economic powers such as the United States (U.S.). In addition, how many of these states have decided to address the illegal drug trafficking business, often through the use of armed force, have put them at odds with their respective citizens. Despite the …show more content…
Citizens may begin to question who controls the monopoly of force, who is extracting revenues (taxes), and have resources been diverted from public goods in an effort to improve security. Ultimately, when a Latin American nation proves unsuccessful in eliminating the illegal drug trafficking industry, it calls into question who and what bears political and social responsibility for this industry. Accountability for the illegal drug trafficking industry neither falls solely upon the back of a Latin American government nor upon its citizens. Like the multiple levels of the institution found in nations, accountability can be divided into three tiers: vertical, horizontal, and social. With concerns to drug trafficking, vertical and social accountability best reflect who and what bears political and social responsibility for the violence associated with the illegal drug trafficking business. Both the state and portions of the populace interact with this industry on a daily basis. In the favelas (illegal shanty towns) of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, drug trafficking has not only established itself as the leading economic industry in that geographic region but has dramatically affected the social character of the favelas’ inhabitants through the adoption of a strong drug culture. The democratic regime found in Brazil has proven unable to stamp out both the illegal