Simply put, the war on drugs is flawed in more ways than one. This “war’ has generated several adverse effects in its wake; it is becoming increasingly and overwhelmingly expensive, it is the cause of violence and civil injustice, and it is not effective in its mission in decreasing the use or supply of narcotics. On the subject of the monetary effects that this drug war has; it is not worth the money and resources to continue fighting against narcotics. The federal government gets its money, not out of thin air, but from the taxpayers.
In 2006, the federal requests for funding of the drug war amounted to a staggering 12. 6 billion dollars (Robinson). Sadly, this number is not truly representative of what the drug war is really costing this country. Almost very single local and federal law enforcement administrations have a drug war budget. These figures were not taken into account for. In a 2002 report the National Drug Control Strategy, these costs were included. The total budget for the war on drugs that year was just shy of 20 billion U. S dollars.
That is 20 billion dollars sourced chiefly from the tax dollars of the citizens of the United States. Neither of these figures even include the cost of processing criminals in the court Systems, but it Can be assumed that those costs are rather high, considering the wages and services provided to and by local and federal courts. One may ask, “Where is this money even going? ‘ According to the NONCE, 70 percent of it is used to fund the reduction of the market by way of imprisonment and military/law enforcement, whereas the other 30 percent is used to fund treatment and research (Robinson).
All the statistical and numerical information pertaining to the costs of the drug war have been presented, but the reasoning behind why it is not worth spending money will be elaborated on in the following paragraphs. Again, it was shown that approximately 70 percent of the federal budget for the war on drugs (again, the report for the federal budget was statistically manipulated and skewed) was going towards the imprisonment and law enforcement against the suppliers and users of narcotics. The effects caused by the imprisonment and armed force against them has sparked violence and civil injustice around the world.
Firstly, look at it from an impoverished families point of view. The growing and manufacturing of opium in Afghanistan is their living and their source of what is usually an inadequate income. When these crops are eradicated and destroyed, and families are destroyed by this; generally violence, food insecurity/malnourishment, increases in poverty, and a decline in school attendance are all a result (Barrett). It is common knowledge that when things as rudimentary as food security or school attendance are disrupted, civil injustice has occurred.
Or for the layman, things are really bad. For instance, the drug-cartel crisis in Mexico is the perfect example of what has ensued in part by the drug war. Drug users in the United States are the biggest customers Of the products Mexican cartels have to offer. Because the drug laws are so harsh in the United States, the drugs were sourced and supplied by Mexican drug cartels. In the 1 ass’s, Mexico plunged into a severe economic crisis. The drug trade as also effected. As a result of intense competition amongst Mexican drug suppliers, violence erupted.
Murders, home invasions, abductions, robberies, etc. (Shirk). To this day, the drug violence in Mexico is more active than ever. These occurrences of wide spread violence and social injustice are not unique to Afghanistan or Mexico. This is happening to impoverished countries all over the world. This is what those 20 billion dollars are going towards. People are dying, losing their loved ones, losing their education, the list goes on. Much of this is could easily e changed if the drug war were to cease existence.
Now, onto the efficacy of this war on drugs; it is not working. So not only is this war on drugs costing the American tax payers billions amongst billions every year, and not only is it cause of civil strife and brutal violence around the world, but it is not even effective in its mission. In 2000, there was statistical proof that not only was the war on drugs ineffective, drug use amongst students has risen since the start of the war on drugs (Robinson). What is more pitiful is the fact that the NONCE falsely showed that drug use Was actually decreasing.
They provided statistics that showed that since 1 985, drug use amongst 12 to 17 years old has decreased; thus illustrating that the war on drugs has in fact been effective in its cause (Robinson)What they failed to mention is that drug use amongst 18 to 25 year olds has increased, resulting in no change in the overall number of drug users since the “war” had begun (Robinson). All in all, the drug war is still an on-going struggle in this country, as well as in countries all over. The taxpayers are still forking out the billions every year. The third-world nations are still victim to civil unrest and violence.