The War on Drugs Essay
The War on Drugs
Despite large amounts of government funding and agencies working together the war on drugs is the most counterproductive measure the United States has launched because its main focus was to stop drug trafficking and criminal activity, but it has done nothing but increase incarceration and large amounts of spending by the U. S. One of the first bills introduced to the United States was the National Prohibition Act in 1920 and also the 18th Amendment. This bill prohibited the manufacture, transportation, and sale of alcohol on a national stage for every day consumption.
The only way to get a hold of alcohol at the time was to obtain a prescription from the doctor for medical purposes. This was just another way the government can tax and control the use of alcohol consumption at the time. In 1933 the prohibition act was repealed. Because of the increase of other drug substance abuse outside the abuse of alcohol with the approval of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Department of the Treasury the Federal Bureau of Narcotics was introduced and the adoption of the Uniform State Narcotics Drug Act was established and created.
First the war on drugs has been a long and expensive campaign the United States has invested in, to include resources, and manpower. President Johnson was the first president to focus illegal drug use. He be believed half of the crime committed in the U. S. was in drug relation and grow by 90 percent over the next decade. The Johnson Administration was the true beginning on the War of Drugs. President Johnson created the Reorganization Plan of 1968 which merged the Bureau of Narcotics and the Bureau of Drug Abuse to form the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs within the Department of Justice.
The belief during this time about drug use was summarized by journalist Max Lerner in his celebrated work America as a Civilization: “As a case in point we may take the known fact of the prevalence of reefer and dope addiction in Negro areas. This is essentially explained in terms of poverty, slum living, and broken families, yet it would be easy to show the lack of drug addiction among other ethnic groups where the same conditions apply. ” (Inciardi The War on Drugs IV, 248)
The use of term ” War on Drug” was first used by President Richard Nixon in 1971. President Nixon was also wanting to continue the anti- war precedent set by Johnson. The start of the U. S. to counteract the war, was to implement the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970. When President Nixon and Admistration declared the end the war on drugs it was manly stated for laws and acts that was made from earlier prohibitation act and laws not for the new era of drugs to sweep the United States .
The actual term war on drugs was coined when in 1971 Congress of the United States released a report that there was a growing trend among the United States serve members from Vietnam that were addicted to heroin and other control substances. The Bureau of Narcotics was replace with the Drug Enforcement Administration in 1973. As early as 1982, with the intense epic of drug use sweeping the nation the United States increased aid and more involvement, tasking the help of the CIA and military indirection efforts national and international levels.
Nixon’s drug force agencies practice illegal acts to make arrest to meet demands of the public, this put a widely held of the arrested made was of African-American personal. The following two presidents Ford and Carter, kept the tradition of continuing to respond with programs of their predecessors. In 1982, Ronald Regan became President with a radical bias within the War on Drugs received a new revitalization. In a speech delivered soon after taking office, Reagan announced, “We’re taking down the surrender flag that has flown over so many drug efforts; we’re running up a battle flag.
Within his first five years of being president he strengthened drug enforcement. He created mandatory sentencing, forfeiture of cash and real estate. In 1986 Reagan was able to pass the Anti-Drug Abuse Act through Congress. This legislation cost the tax payers a additional $1. 7 million to fund, established 29 mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses. Reagan’s former Vice-President George H. W. Bush was the next in the oval office. He shared the same political views and background as past presidents.
Intensifying narcotics regulation when the First National Drug Control Strategy was issued by the Office of National Drug Control in 1989 and doing nothing to reduce sentencing disparities and racial bias carrying over from the Reagan administration. The following three presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama continued with the trend and maintaining the promise to overcome the epidemic of drugs that will not be tolerated and over come during taking office. There are over one million people every year in the United States incarcerated due to drug law violations.
With the increase of the youth involvement of drug violation, this has had a everlasting effect of them to include permanent removal of education opportunities, the ability to vote, obtaining employment become far more difficult because of violations of their youth. Studies show that the War on Drugs has made a permanent underclass of people who have few educational or job opportunities, often as a result of being punished for drug offenses which in turn have resulted from attempts to earn a living in spite of having no education or job opportunities.
The drug was is said to have wasted billions of wasted tax dollars and misallocated spending. The government has spent more money on the drug war then it was spent of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan combined. Due to the over whelming account of people being incarnated it has put a financial drain and a puts a stain on the legal and law enforcement resources. Due to prohibition in the United States, criminal organization have found other means of transportation, growing and distribution causing a lost of many lives.
Drug cartels are the only organizations that gain profit from prohibition which is regenerated for smuggling, violence and corruption in government networks. The next generation on fighting the war of drugs is coming. The question is to ask are selves to spend are tax payer money on prevention or treatment. The US funded a research study that showed that all of the Governments effects to stop drug trafficking coming into the United States all little to no effect.
From the RAND Corporation the study, “Sealing the Borders: The Effects of Increased Military Participation in Drug Interdiction,” was prepared by seven researchers, mathematicians and economists at the National Defense Research Institute, a branch of the RAND, and was released in 1988. (R. Reuter 1988) There have been similar conclusions conducted by seven on organizations. The RAND corporation has also included that budget money for drug enforcement should be spent on treatment other then prevention.
In 2008 a declaration was announced to balance a drug policy to the prevention, research, education and treatment. Many people are in favor of treatment and prevention instead of punishment sue to the high amounts of financing for law enforcement and court cost of the tax payers. In conclusion, the measure the United States have implemented to combat drugs, smuggling and drug abuse have been at best unsuccessful, and at worst counterproducvtive. If the United States truly desires to curb drug abuse, new forward thinking methods such treatment and rehabilitation would have to be implemented.
University/College: University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 22 December 2016
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