The ways to deal with drug abuse in the country - Research Proposal Example

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The discussion seeks to review three of the most common proposals for the “War against Drug Use and Distribution in the US” - prohibition, decriminalization and legalization - and hopes to determine the advantages and disadvantages of each suggestion. …
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The ways to deal with drug abuse in the country
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Download file to see previous pages The paper tells that in a 2010 research conducted by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, it was found that marijuana use continues to increase as the perceived risk for the drug is falling. In fact, the research found that even 8th graders are now using the drug and one in 16 high school seniors is daily marijuana user. Heroin use with a needle has increased by 0.4% as compared to its 2009 figures. While the use of cocaine, sedatives and Vicodin are decreasing, such decline is insignificant as more and more youth rediscover “club drugs”, such as ecstacy, meth, LSD and other hallucinogens. According to the report, the process of “generational forgetting” keeps the drug epidemic going. Despite the existing drug prevention strategies employed by the government, the number of drug users is increasing, and the age of first use is decreasing. Meanwhile, the government continues to spend a huge amount of money on law enforcement and treatment of drug users. In 2005 alone, the government has already spent more than $400 billion for abuse-related cases. With the economy in turmoil, the government is forced to cut costs in order to address other issues in the country. As such, one can expect that spending on drug-related issues will fall and new social issues will arise. Already, many researches are pointing substance abuse as a determinant to poor health and crime. If the government continues to use the old strategies it has been employing, one expect the rise in other social problems such as homelessness, domestic violence and child abuse. (Eckholm). As can be seen from the discussion above, one can already see that there is a need for a better program to address drug use. As such, this paper hopes to discover new ways to deal with drug abuse in the country. It seeks to review three of the most common proposals for the “War against Drug Use and Distribution in the US” - prohibition, decriminalization and legalization - and hopes to determine the advantages and disadvantages of each suggestion. In the latter part of this paper, a new proposal on how drug use can be addressed more effectively will be summarized, and a system or process will be determined in order to make the proposal a reality. Prohibition As A Solution To The Drug Problem Over the years, the United States has adhered to prohibition as a national drug control policy. In a 1992 assessment conducted by Peter Reuter, he found that 80% of budget allocation for federal drug control went to law enforcement. Of course, this is just one indicator of the prevalence of drug prohibition measures in the country. A research through history shows a number of drug laws that aims to criminalize drug manufacture, distribution and consumption (Yablon). Various states impose various penalties – some may revoke a drug offender’s driver’s license, while others punish even the simple possession of marijuana with incarceration (Reuter 21). The need for vigorous enforcement came as result of the carnage arising from drug use and distribution. The increase in violent crimes and the apparent threat to the health of the community cannot be addressed by prevention alone – the effects of drug abuse are happening, and there is a need to stop drug offenders from causing additional harm to the society. For [law enforcement advocates] the heart of the matter is the threat to the youth and to American values; drug use means an abandoning of concern with others, and focusing on short-term pleasures for oneself. It is a lack of clarity about values in society and a failure to ensure that drug use is punished that leads to so many young people becoming regular users of psychoactives. (Reuter 18) Through intense enforcement of drug laws, and by criminalizing drug use and distribution, drugs become more difficult to obtain. Moreover, users will find drugs legally risky; thus, reinforcing the messages of drug prevention. Drug prohibition advocates ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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