The United States over the years has adapted some drugs Control policies in a bit to help control and reduce the level of the illicit drugs abuse and addiction in the country. This has been done through legislation, incarceration, sentencing and enforcement to reduce supply of the drugs. It also been trying to cub this situation to reduce the ever growing demand for the drugs by the citizens through prevention, treatment as well as through education.
The purpose of these Acts and policies have been to increase the efficiency of the drug interventions program by involving more offenders in treatment, coming up with new civil order which runs parallel to anti-social behavior orders, stimulating the powers of court and police against the offenders and clarifying current law in regard to mushrooms magic. The history of the United States trial to cut down supply of the illegal drugs especially marijuana traces back to the 1887 when the federal government banned the opium importation by Chiness citizens in the States.
Later on, in 1906, the Pure Food and Drug Act prohibited the transportation of mislabeled food and drugs from one state to the other but this Act did not ban the use of opiate drugs and cocaine. It created quality standards and labeling truth which resulted to medicine industry patent as such drugs were demanded to have labels (Cutlip, 1994, 56). Other efforts to control drug abuse included the municipal ordinance created in 1875 in San Francisco that banned opium smoking in opium dens.
This was followed by enaction of legislation by several states that limited morphine and cocaine supply in their states. These demanded doctors to do prescription before getting the drugs so as to limit their legal utilization for medications. The laws approved ineffective in control of cocaine and morphine because the drugs could be gotten freely from states that did not impose such legislations. The Harrison Act of 1914, one of the most crucial legislative laws regarding drugs abuse has been seen as the standard as well as the basis for regulation of narcotics in the U.
S. It was concerned with the Federal government’s power to tax as well as controlling the sale and distribution of narcotics. It therefore made the use of cocaine and morphine illegal and demanded that any person involved in manufacturing, importation, selling, dispensing and distribution of opium and cocaine. The act criminalized about 200,000 narcotics users. The U. S government effort to cub drugs through reduction of demand for the drugs has been wide as compared to the supply control.
The medical profession has been deprived of their entitlement to give narcotics cure doses to the addicts. But the passage of the 1929 Porter Narcotic Farm Acts saw allowed the Public Health service to come up with Federal Hospitals for treatment of addicts in prison through provision of psychiatric and medical services (Free, 2003, p. 78). The Supreme Court, in 1962 ruled that narcotine addiction is an illness but not a crime. Since then there has been a raise in the number of efforts by Federal hospital treatment.
A trial to provide Federal support to non Federal entities for treatment was experienced through the passage of the Community Mental Health Centers Act of 1963 and its 1968 amendment that has created specialized addict treatment money. These two developments have major significance as they have enabled addiction of narcotic to be in the realm of mental illness hence making chance for Federal support in treatment of local drugs. The Narcotic Addict Rehabilitation Act (NARA) of 1966 has called for federal addict convicts to be committed civilly instead of prosecuting them.
It has also given the court chance to mandate a program for treating the convicts. Before the occurrence of civil commitment, the courts could judge the addicts as people who could be rehabilitated. Federal efforts in reduction of Drugs demand started as a major activity after the enactment of Public Law 92-255, the Drug Abuse Office and Treatment act of 1972 which called for the creation of the Special Action Office for Drug Abuse Prevention (SAODAP) that was mandated with the task of planning, creating policy as well as establishing objectives for Federal Demand reduction programs.
Since then the program has been involved in centralizing as well as providing leadership to drug abuse demand reduction activities which over the years has helped achieve some positive results in control of the drug demand. Legislative laws to reduce drugs supply needs to control production of the substances that produce these drugs. For instance, regulating the production of poppy, through taxation and licensing which produces opium, would reduce the drugs supply to the people.
The government’s effort of controlling synthetic equivalents of opium and cocaine should emphasize severe penalties for violating the anti-drug regulation acts. The manufacturing Act (1960) has helped tighten restrictions and controls over legally produced narcotic drugs. It has set a system of manufactures licensing as well as setting of quotas and classes for natural and synthetic drugs. Currently there is a feeling of the need to still tighten further this rules Creation of the single Convention on Narcotic Drugs in 1961 has assisted in modernization and coordination of international narcotic regulation (Santow, 2005, p.
78). The Comprehensive Drug Abuse and prevention and control Act has brought together narcotic, marijuana and other ‘dangerous’ drug laws making one single law that made control of the legal drug industry a well as importation and distribution of the illegal drugs throughout the United States. It has also defined a schedule for drugs with schedule one including substances that had not been medically accepted but had potential for abuse. Schedule II included cocaine and morphine. Marijuana has been in one group with heroine because they contain more significant liability of abuse.
Marijuana was selected from other drugs and its maximum penalty for possession lowered to one year jail term in addition to $5,000 in fine and a probation option. In an effort to cub marijuana demand, the U. S has created the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse to study the kind and extent of activities in drug abuse demand reduction and report back on the results, conclusions as well as recommendations of the required future activities. The commission has recommended on the decriminalization of marijuana although this has never been legalized.
There have been restrictive policies in the recent years in supply and demand reduction for the drugs especially marijuana. Some states have decriminalized the possession as well as the personal use of marijuana. This has helped to discourage marijuana to some extent. Other states have embanked on law enforcement, interdictions as well as seizures of the same. An attempt to have marijuana as a medicine has been rejected on the facts that there were other medications that could do better than marijuana.
The government’s effort to slow trafficking of the drugs through seizures and interdictions has lead to the drug traffickers changing from marijuana to cocaine since it is more easily handled and profitable. There has also been the possibility of stimulating ingenuity of America to plant marijuana which is of high quality. This would lead to half of marijuana that is being consumed in the U. S being grown domestically even indoors under manipulated conditions (Haq, 2000, p. 43).
Decriminalization in some states has been noted not to cause a subsequent increase in its use, but experienced the same rate to the states that have not decriminalized it thus there has be no change in discriminating illicit drugs This leads to the losing the chance for concerned action. Since marijuana is the most favored drug by the youth, most citizens do worry of the impact it will have on the young generation. The restriction to import the drug would also lead top domestic growing of the same with more strands of marijuana
References Cutlip, S. M. (1994). the Unseen Power: Public Relations, a History. Mahwah NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. p. 56. Free M. D. (2003). Racial Issues in Criminal Justice: the Case of African Americans. Mahwah NJ: Praeger. p. 78. Haq, M. E. (2000). Drugs in South Asia: from the Opium Trade to the Present Day. London: Macmillan. p. 43. Santow, L. J. (2005). Social Security and the Middle-class Squeeze: Fact and Fiction about America’s Entitlement programs. Mahwah NJ: Praeger. p. 78.