The use and consequence abuses associated with drugs are not new phenomena. Primitive people used drugs to induce states of intoxication during religious ceremonies. As early as 2700 BC, the Chinese used marijuana under Emperor Shen Neng as prescription for gout, constipation, and absentmindedness. The Egyptians used opium in 1500 BC, as prescription for inducing sleep and curing mental disorder. Its widespread use, however, took place between 1805 and 1832, when morphine and codein (methylmorphine) both opium alkaloids were discovered. With the invention of the hypodermic needle in 1843, narcotic addiction spread throughout Europe and America. Among the prominent persons who took drugs without realizing its dangerous effects were American poet Edgar Allan Poe and English poets Francis Thompson, Samuel Coleridge and Thomas de Quincy, author of “Confessions of an English poets Francis Thompson, Samuel Coleridge and Thomas de Quincy, author of “Confessions of an English Opium Eater.”
The Problem of Drug Abuse in the Philippines
As early as the 6th century, opium use was known as a practice of the Chinese who settled in the Philippines. Spanish colonizers engaged in the importation and sale of opium exclusively for Chinese users.
In early 20th century, the Americans occupied the Philippines, and came up with the opium policy which was to eradicate use among its residents.
In 1903, the American reform commission was organized in the Philippines, it was the first of its kind in the world.
In 1942, the Japanese occupied the Philippines. The opiate addicts underwent a 3- year period of abstinence since, the country had been cut off the Indian and Chinese opium supply routes.
From 1950 to 1955, the number of opiate addicts in the entire Philippines was most probably the lowest in the entire Asian region.
Between 1950 and 1959, the estimate was 1 out of every 30, 000, most of them Chinese, comprising about 90% of persons...
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