population has an extremely high rate of alcohol and drug abuse” (Grolier). Several groups have formed and spoken out regarding their position. “Speaking Out Against Drug Legalization is the first step in helping todeliver the credible, consistent message about the risks and costs of thelegalization of drugs to people in terms that make sense to them. Theanti-legalization message is effective when communicated by representatives ofthe Federal Government, but takes on even more credibility when it comes fromthose in the community who can put the legalization debate in localperspective” (Internet). After learning about the issues regarding bothsides of the argument, I would choose to support those who oppose legalizationof any drugs. Drugs simply create problems which effect society in several ways.
The government has made several efforts to control drugs and their users,however, to most the problem appears too out of hand. “Others see potentialprofit in legalizing drugs and still others simply believe that individualrights to take drugs should be protected. The group also acknowledged that thelegalization concept appeals to people who are looking for simple solutions tothe devastating problem of drug abuse” (Internet). Society’s answer to theproblem is to trick the drug user by giving him what he wants.
People believethat making drugs legal will take away the temptation to use them. This idea iswrong and far from logical. If drugs are legalized then they will be moreaccessible to the young, addicted, and ignorant. “As a result the readyavailability of addicting drugs, and as a result of their heavy use for medicalproblems, many individuals became addicted to the narcotics contained in thesepotent medicines. In fact, in 1900, there were more narcotics addicts,proportionate to the population, than there are today.
At that time, most of theusers who became addicts were medical addicts. Very few abusers took drugs for”recreational” purposes. In 1914, in an effort to curb theindiscriminate use of narcotics, the federal government passed the Harrison Act,making it illegal to obtain a narcotic drug without a prescription. During the1920’s the Supreme Court ruled that maintaining addicts on narcotic drugs, evenby prescription, was in violation of the Harrison Act. Some 30,000 physicianswere arrested during this period for dispensing narcotics, and some 3,000actually served prison sentences. Consequently, doctors all but abandoned thetreatment of addicts for nearly half a century in the United States”(Grolier).
The only resulting effect will be a negative one. There are nopositive aspects of putting drugs on the streets with a label reading”legal. ” There are plenty of people in society that find enoughtrouble on their own without the help of their country. Legalizing drugs wouldhave a devastating result that would affect society as a whole. “Audiencesneed to understand that 70% of drug users are employed, and that the school busdriver who drives your children to school could smoke marijuana, that thesurgeon who operates on you may have cocaine in his system, and that the driverin back of you may be on speed. The debate needs to demonstrate graphically howthe common man will be impacted by drug legalization” (Internet).
There isan idea that the “drug user” is a low class, unemployed junkie. Thisis untrue. The drug user is often a white collared worker with a family and afuture. They are not all dirty with missing teeth and poor grammar.
The commonmisconceptions of the “user” are dangerous to those members of societytrying to rid the world of the problem. “Drinking on the job is a socialand economic problem with a long history. With the growing popularity of illegaldrugs in the 1960’s and 1970’s, it was to be expected that their use in theworkplace would emerge as a major issue by the 1980’s. Estimates of employeedrug use vary greatly, ranging from 10 percent to 25 percent for the proportionof workers who use drugs occasionally on the job. The safe performance of someoccupations – among them, airline pilot, air traffic controller, truck driver,and physician – can be compromised by drug use” (Grolier). One of thegreatest concerns of drugs is their contribution to the crime rate.
Crime willalways be a problem as long as drugs exist and are abused. “One category ofcrime is the victimless