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Why it’s Time For The US Government to Legalize Drugs
11/13/2019 Drugs Benjamin
keywords: Legalize Drugs Legalizing Drugs National Drug Control Policy war on drugs campaign

It has been 48 years since the United States government launched the war on drugs campaign to combat the menace of drug abuse. The results of the drug war are there for everyone to see. It has been an utter failure, despite the fact that we have spent over a trillion dollars of taxpayer money.

We should have learned that these types of policies don’t work. Just look at prohibition! How did that turn out? We fueled millions into organized crime’s pockets just like we are doing now with drugs.

We are at a point where we need to come up with radical solutions to end the drug overdose problem which is plaguing our country right now. One such solution is the legalization of drugs.

Why the War on Drugs Has Been a Colossal Failure

Our current policy of criminalizing the possession and sale of drugs has been an unmitigated disaster for several reasons.

  • First of all, criminal prohibition of drugs has resulted in the formation of a gigantic black market, as it happened with alcohol during the prohibition era. To give you an idea as to how big a market it is, here is a piece of data from the Office of National Drug Control Policy. In 2013, the total value of the illegal drugs sold in the US was over $100 billion.
  • Secondly, the criminalization of drug use and possession prevents drug users from seeking help even if they want to, as they risk getting arrested and incarcerated. This is one of the reasons why the number of drug addicts in the country is increasing exponentially. Well, also because they don’t want to see any more Star Wars movies or any other movies as terrible as Iron Man II!
  • Third, the United States currently has the highest incarceration rate compared to any other developed country solely because of the war on drugs. Several thousands of people are rotting in prison for merely possessing a small amount of marijuana. Marijuana does not hurt anyone – alcohol causes more problems to society than crack and certainly marijuana. Conservatives talk about limited government yet lock up people smoking an almost harmless drug – makes no sense!

Why Legalizing Drugs Makes Sense

Legalizing drugs will destroy the need for a black market. When drugs are freely available, people no longer have to depend on shady dealers or drug mules from across the border.

More importantly, data shows that when drugs are legalized, drug use actually tends to decline steeply. For instance, Portugal is one of the few countries in the world that have decriminalized all drugs. The drug overdose death rate in Portugal is three per million adults. In contrast, the drug overdose death rate in the US is an astonishing 185 per million adults. Wow!

Wake up conservatives – your failed war on drugs has been a public fiasco.

The reason is that when drugs are decriminalized, people tend to seek help without worrying about getting incarcerated. They manage to kick the habit and become productive members of the society.

Isn’t that what we want for our country too? It is precisely why we need to decriminalize drugs. Let us start with marijuana, which is less harmful than alcohol and has a wide range of therapeutic qualities.

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