Doing the same thing over and over again is the very definition of insanity. This statement clearly defines the War on Drugs. Ever since President Nixon declared the War on Drugs back in 1971 I personally feel we as a society has been losing.
The United States has the highest documented incarceration rate and total prison population in the world. At the start of 2008, more than 2.3 million people were incarcerated, more than one in every 100 adults. The current rate is about seven times the 1980 figure, and over three times the figure in Poland, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) country with the next highest rate. African-American males are jailed at about six times the rate of white males and three times the rate of Hispanic males.The country’s high rate of incarceration is largely due to drug sentencing guidelines and drug policies.
The present state of incarceration in the U.S. as a result of the war on drugs arrived in several stages. By 1971, different stops on drugs had been implemented for more than 50 years (for e.g. since 1914, 1937 etc.) with only a very small increase of inmates per 100 000 citizens. During the first 9 years after Nixon coined the expression “War on Drugs”, statistics showed only a minor increase in the total number of imprisoned.
After 1980, the situation began to change. In the 1980s, while the number of arrests for all crimes had risen by 28%, the number of arrests for drug offenses rose 126%. Among the prisoners, drug offenders made up the same percentage of State prisoners in both 1997 and 2004 (21%). The percentage of Federal prisoners serving time for drug offenses declined from 63% in 1997 to 55% in 2004. The US Department of Justice, reporting on the effects of state initiatives, has stated that, from 1990 through 2000, “the increasing number of drug offenses accounted for 27% of the total growth among black inmates, 7% of the total growth among Hispanic inmates, and 15% of the growth among white inmates.” In addition to prison or jail, the United States provides for the deportation of many non-citizens convicted of drug offenses.
In 1994, it was reported that the “War on Drugs” resulted in the incarceration of one million Americans each year. Of the related drug arrests, about 225,000 are for possession of cannabis, the fourth most common cause of arrest in the United States.
Marijuana constitutes almost half of all drug arrests, and between 1990–2002, marijuana accounted for 82% of the increase in the number of drug arrests. In 2004, approximately 12.7% of state prisoners and 12.4% of Federal prisoners were serving time for a marijuana-related offense.
Federal and state policies also impose collateral consequences on those convicted of drug offenses, such as denial of public benefits or licenses, that are not applicable to those convicted of other types of crime.
Personally from my life’s experience, we as a nation need a different approach, in business if you are losing you find a different way so we must start to look at this epidemic as a health problem rather then a law that needs to be enforced which in return creates a black market were some of our worst problems stem from our society!
“One of the worlds greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation.” Thomas B. Reed Speaker of the House (1886)
These are just a tip of the iceberg and facts about this never ending War on Drugs. As always even if you disagree with this article and also with the gentlemen in the video, feel free to comment below.