Drug Abuse is not a term of which most of us haven’t heard or we haven’t had vague idea about, but medically it is defined as “Drug abuse is the use of illicit drugs or the abuse of prescription or over-the-counter drugs. The abuse of legitimate drugs (prescription or over-the-counter) can happen when people use the drugs in a manner or in quantities other than directed, or for purposes that are not legitimate” (Medline Plus: Medical Encyclopedia).
Drug Abuse not only has physical effects on a person but it also affects person’s social activities. Drug abuse leads to drug addiction soon enough than one can realize it and then this addiction ends up into criminal activity because the drugs are expensive and even if they are not the person with withdrawal symptoms neither have patience nor conscience to act lawfully in order to get a hold of them.
Under criminal justice system drug abuse is concerned with three drug related offenses, firstly offense of possessions or sales of drugs, secondly offenses related to drug abuse like stealing money for drugs and thirdly being associated with any drug abuser or illegal activity(“Principle Of Drug Abuse Treatment For criminal Justice Populations”, 2006). It may be thought that drug abuse would be restrained in jails, but alarming facts confirm the opposite. A 2002 survey of U.
S jail showed that 52% of women and 44% of men imprisoned had alcohol or drug dependency (“Principle of Drug Abuse Treatment For criminal Justice Populations”, 2006). Another survey has concluded that “Adults who were arrested in the past year for any serious violent or property offense were more likely to have used an illicit drug in the past year than those who were not arrested for a serious offense (60. 1% vs. 13. 6%)”(“Illicit Drug Use among Persons Arrested for Serious Crimes”, 2005).
Now when we relate drug abuse with criminal activity then we mean to state that it becomes a disease initiating from social problems and stressors. The Question arises why does drug abuse leads to convicting criminal activities and the answer is because drug abuse may be used for relieving oneself from pain, stress, tension, depression or other negative emotions, gradually it leads to addiction and then it becomes a disease which affects behavior.
Scientists have discovered that chronic drug abuse amends the brain’s anatomy and chemistry and changes persists even after ones stop taking drugs (“Principle of Drug Abuse Treatment For criminal Justice Populations”,2006). Under drug effect, ones ability to judge his actions is impaired. In other words drug abuse leads to elevate criminal thinking either before drug use (during withdrawal symptoms) or after drug use. As far as the matter of legalizing drug is concern, it won’t be tough to conclude that it won’t be a wise decision from government.
Some experimental legalization were made in past in some states of U. S and their outcomes have provided solid ground for not continuing this legalization process for example in Alaska, the person was made authorized to keep marijuana in home for personal consumption, as a result teenagers of the state reported more than twice the national average for their age group in marijuana consumption (“Never Mind: Alaska’s Failed Legalization Experiment”).
The proponents of legalization are of the view that more availability does not lead to more consumption and low prizes wont accelerate sales of drugs and more over not all consumers turns up to be addicts, they are neglecting the fact that physicians have higher addiction rates due to high availability, and many soldiers in Vietnam got habituated of drugs because of high availability, cheapness and their tediousness and crack does induce violence, irresponsibility and crime (Ernest van den Haag, 1990).
So I my of the opinion that drug legalization won’t help rather it will put on a pedestal to drug use as the legal threat would be deficient and drugs will come within buying limits of average person. Reference: 1-Medical Encyclopedia: Medline Plus Available on:http://www. nlm. nih. gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001945. htm 2-“Principle of Drug Abuse Treatment For criminal Justice Populations”, July 2006: National Institute of Drug Abuse Available on: http://www. drugabuse. gov/PDF/PODAT_CJ/PODAT_CJ. pdf
3-“Illicit Drug Use among Persons Arrested for Serious Crimes”, December 2005: The National Survey of Drug Use and Health Report Available on:http://www. oas. samhsa. gov/2k5/arrests/arrests. htm 4-“Never Mind: Alaska’s Failed Legalization Experiment”: U. S Drug Enforcement Administration. Available on:http://www. dea. gov/ongoing/alaska. html 5-Ernest van den Haag April 1, 1990:”Never, again – legalization of drugs”: National Review. Available on: http://findarticles. com/p/articles/mi_m1282/is_n6_v42/ai_8878259/pg_1