Criminalization of drugs essay

Document Type:Creative Writing

Subject Area:Literature

Document 1

Advocating for the criminalization of drugs and substance use is believed to be a rational approach towards a serious social issue of harm reduction and strengthening of liberty rights. On the other hand, criminalization of drugs is irrational and not altruistically motivated. Criminalization of drugs is coercive, but it is critical in reducing addiction and substance abuse. However, proactive preventative measures are better than criminalizing drug and substance use. In the article “How well do international drug conventions protect public health?", by Room, Robin, and Peter Reuter, the authors argue that the criminalization of drugs is both rational and critical to the reduction of harm caused by drug and substance abuse (Room and Peter 87). When the costs of drugs are high, their demand reduces.

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Instead of legalizing drug use, criminalization also ensures that the drug users face the law and in case they are incarcerated, their likelihood of engaging in drug use reduces. As a result, when they return to society, they become more productive members of the community and participate in constructive activities. Thus, reducing the availability of drugs, deterrence, increasing drug prices and denouncing drugs reduces the harm caused by drug use. It reduces drug-related harms such as addiction, violence, property crime, and addiction. In so doing, criminalization reduces the occurrence of immoral behaviors and thereby establishing a moral ground for society (Buchhandler-Raphael 291). In contrast, the article "The harmful side effects of drug prohibition” by Barnett, Randy suggests that criminalization of drugs and drug use is irrational and coercive (Barnett).

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The author suggests that the drug laws and policies used to criminalize drug users are punitive and punish users. Criminalization of drug use and possession subjects drug users to legal and physical jeopardy. At the outset, incarceration of drug users causes harms while acclaimed at discouraging drug users from engaging in the prohibited use of drugs. The users turn into worse criminals. Since it is hard for the criminalized drug users to secure legitimate employment, they turn to the black market for solace and to generate income. Once the threshold of a black market is crossed, it becomes harder to combat it than when the more proactive measure would be sought. Areas of common ground The criminalization approach to drug use and substance abuse focuses on reducing the use of drugs and achieving a drug-free world.

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A common ground for prohibitionist approach is that criminalization should aim at reducing harm, immorality, and maximizing the well-being of the users. Advocating policies on the basis that they work can help in achieving the shared goal of making a drug-free world. The plans should lead to more good both for policymakers and the wider public who are the taxpayers. Solutions One solution is the decriminalization of drug use and substance abuse. Decriminalization entails removal of criminal penalties of possessing or using drugs. Elimination of drug penalties can improve public health, reduce the harm caused to users and reduce the harem, caused by drugs. Therefore, stringent regulations, decriminalization of drugs and redefining the drug problem should be sought to fight the war against drugs.

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