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Illegal drugs are according to the government a major problem in our society. According to the Department of Justice drugs are the cause of most of our crime. The three major drugs that are being widely used are marijuana, cocaine, and crack. These drugs are used to relieve pain and make people “feel” better mentally and physically (69). If we legalized crack, marijuana, and cocaine it would drop the crime rate, make the people and government more money, and cut the abuse rate.
As the Collegiate dictionary defines these drugs they have many uses and each can be used medically, some already are. Cocaine is defined as a bitter crystalline alkaloid obtained from coca leaves (425). Now cocaine is used medically as a topical anesthetic. Crack is defined as highly purified cocaine used in small chips for smoking (430). Marijuana is a plant also known as hemp, but dried, crumpled, and rolled to smoke (658). Marijuana is used to help cancer patients and people that have long-term terminal illness relieve their pain. Many drugs have very helpful means; you just have to find them and give them a chance.
According to David Bender and Bruno Leone currently, drugs cost users about $25 billion dollars a year; the government is spending $25.5 billion a year trying to fight the drugs (78). If the government legalized and taxed the drugs like they do alcohol and tobacco, they would make a profit and there would be less demand.
According to the Department of Justice Illegal drugs cost our society more than $110 billion dollars yearly.
“These estimated costs result from the human lives lost directly from overdose and indirectly from drug-abuse related diseases or accidents, and the resources expended to apprend, sentence, treat, and incarcerate drug users. Looking at this and how much the people spend on drugs. If we gave up the war and declared peace wouldn’t it solve a lot of issues and cost we the taxpayers less money.”
The major issues are whither or not crack, cocaine, and marijuana should be legalized. According to Mills if we let men run loose and make their own decisions on what they want to subject their bodies to, they will make the wrong choice. The government was created to help man make the right decisions for their lives. If they gave the people freedom they may want more (168). It should be mans choice, drugs are not slavery. Slavery is when man is owned as property, can be beaten, molested, and used without permission from him; with slavery there is no escape. With drug use you have a choice you can stop and get help or you can keep using, drugs are not an item that should be considered as slavery; but many people do consider it slavery. They think that if you are on drugs you can longer function as human being, your mind is no longer in your control; if that was the case how then could you stop using drugs with minimal help.
According to the department of Justice the government has implemented a system in 1994 to fight in the war against drugs. They have set up a court system, built more jails, and made funding available to each state if the want to build rehab centers. This means that the government is spending $215.1 billion dollars to make this work. Each drug offender they get in the system gets tested and treated for drug use, and then once they are “rehabilitated” they are put back into society. That means that once they are out of the system nothing is done for them, they tend to go back to doing exactly what they were before. This plan to me, seems expensive and pointless. I think it was initiated to make the government look like they were doing something.
If we made drugs legal we could tax them, like we do alcohol and tobacco. I know a lot of people that have quite drinking and smoking; because, they could no longer afford it. Who is to say that won’t happen with drugs to. Instead of spending the money trying to punish people, we could use it to try to help them. According to Dr. Ruwart Drugs are less addictive then tobacco and alcohol and our only way to stop people from abuse is to educate. Right now there are only a few programs such as DARE out there trying to educate the populace. We need more educational programs and rehabilitation centers not more jails and special courts.
The drawbacks to enabling this kind of program would be a lot more time consuming, more manpower, and more brainpower (used to think of more ways to help drugs users). This process would take longer than just throwing them in jail, but would benefit it the long run. We would need more manpower to staff the rehab centers and counsel people. We would need more people willing to spend the time and energy trying to come up with, revise, and use current plans of action. This process may seem longer but the outcome will be better.
The advantages would mean less money spent from the taxpayers, a better society, and Fewer drug users. The government would be using the taxpayer’s money to build the rehab center. After the initial build it would cost less to run and staff treatment centers then it would to keep up the jail systems. Society would better by less crime one six of the people in the jails are then for crimes related to drugs such as theft, robberies, and muggings. If drugs were made legal that wouldn’t be a problem; how many people steal to get money for alcohol or tobacco? I think a lot of people would stop using legalized drugs if we taxed them. To legalize drugs would mean to give the people the right to choose what they wish to do with their bodies and lives; I think they have that right.
In conclusion, if we legalized drugs we would be putting a stop to the ongoing war and make society better. As seen with the prohibition of alcohol, if you make it illegal more people will do it for the excitement. If you take away that excitement you take away the drive. We would be freeing the people to make their own decision about their bodies and lives. It would make the government less in control of us. I think that legalization of drugs is the only route to go.
Bender, David & Leone, Bruno. War on Drugs. Greenhaven Press. Inc San Diego, CA
Bender, David & Leone, Bruno. Chemical Dependency. Greenhaven Press Inc.
San Diego, CA 1991.
Bonevac, Daniel ,ed. Today’s moral issues: Classic & Contemporary Perspectives.
3rd ed. Moutainview: Mayfield Publishing Company 1999 .
Department of Justice. The Clintons administration’s Law enforcement strategy: Breaking the cycle of drugs and crime. May 1999.
Ruwart, Doctor. Libertarians and the war on drugs. Ask Dr. Ruwart,
. May 1999.
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