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Why We Should Change The Way We Treat The War On Drugs

The 18th Amendment and related laws in 1919:


Made alcohol illegal to sell, manufacture or transport in US Organized crime became widespread (black market, mob bosses, etc). Resulting in:
Progressively more violence. Progressively more addiction problems. Progressively more theft. Progressively more inmates.

Ban ended in 1933 due to passage of 21st Amendment which repeals the 18th Amendment

What did we learn?


You cant pass laws to change peoples behavior. Legal prohibition of a vice:
Redirects money to people that do not follow the law. Punishes addicts.

Media Blitz (yellow journalism)


According to the News and Media back then, Marijuana:
Causes car accidents Causes loose morality Causes acts of shocking violence Causes incurable insanity Destroys the soul Is deadlier than heroin or cocaine

In 1937, The Marijuana Tax Act passes US Congress:


It did not criminalize possession or usage of hemp, marijuana or cannibis It did impose:
large taxes (for the time) on everyone that bought/sold and a possible 5 year prison sentence.

The drug war really took off once Ronald Reagan was elected President (1981). Since then, through legislators from both parties:
Prohibition of all drugs dramatically increases, including Marijuana. Drug users are criminalized
Sent to prison instead of treated Fined large amounts Become more addicted in prison

Organized crime is indirectly given more power and money. Resulting in:
More violent crimes More theft More inmates More addiction problems

Pride? The US is the World Leader in imprisonment rates We have more in prison for drug related crimes than all other offenses combined We currently have more inmates in America than the population of the state of New Mexico
52.4% are drug related 34.9% are non-violent drug related (possession, use)

Drugs are still more accessible than ever


High Schools Middle Schools

of Americans support the drug war of Americans consider the drug war a failure

Prohibition of vice still doesnt work


Empowers organized crime Behaviors dont change

Imprisonment makes people worse


People become more addicted in prison Once a criminal, Always a Criminal
Harder to get proper employment Harder to stay in the lawful path

Inmates network and make friends with other inmates.

Treatment of drug addiction as a medical condition is not considered in discipline, resulting in:
More addicts, more drug-related crimes, less productive workforce, more money from addicts go to fund more crime.

Lets Treat Our Addicted