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Why Is Hippie So Popular In The Mid-1960s

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Recreational drug use became a popular trend set in the mid-1960s by the ‘Hippie’ subculture in America. Hippies were a group of middle-class American youth who, after the second world war, became dissatisfied with the way the government and American society worked. Hippies were involved in protests such as U.S involvement in the Vietnam War and the poor treatment of African-Americans. Alongside these protests Hippies also promoted the idea of using drugs. The use of psychotropic drugs, such as marijuana and LSD, was popular among the hippies because they believed not only that it was a form of rebellion against the government but it was also a way of enhancing their creativity (Issitt, 2009).

The hippie way of thinking and living began to increasingly influence other western countries around the world. New Zealand youth first came under the influence of Hippie values and drug trends when
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New Zealanders were influenced by the hippie era to take drugs such as marijuana. Newbold & Gilbert (in press) states that between the years of 1960 and 1963 an average of 73 drug offences each year were reported. However, in 1964 reported drug offences began to rise, reaching 400 offences in 1970. In the 1970s marijuana was easily accessible and being widely used by New Zealand middle-class youth in all the major urban centres.

Drug offences continued to steadily increase in the 1990s with a peak in 1998. Reported marijuana offences continued to escalate in the 1990s, growing from 18,000 in 1989 to 25,000 in 1998 and representing 94 percent of all reported drug crimes (Newbold, 2016). 50 percent of New Zealanders from the ages of 15-45 had used marijuana in a 1998 National drug survey (Field and Casswell 1999).

Following the 1998 peak of reported drug offences, reports have since declined. 21st century reported drug crimes have decreased by
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