The topic of a drug free society and whether such can ever exist causes many reactions. Some may even ask why this is an important conversation? To begin this discussion it is worthwhile to look historically at why it has become such an issue in the United States. In 1971, President Nixon called for a War on Drugs recruiting the assistance of the Federal Government and in particular the Drug Enforcement Agency [DEA] (Vulliamy, 2011). As part of this measure, Nixon requested financial assistance approximating an initial $84 million for these emergency measures in an era of significant concern about drugs (2011). According to the President, drug abuse was ‘public enemy number one’ (2011). The War on Drugs went far beyond continental United States, recognizing that many of these drugs were coming across our borders, but Nixon used this initial funding to focus on local impact by establishing methadone clinics and other treatment options for returning Vietnam vets as that was the most critical issue of the time (Schneider, 2011). In Past Eras
At one point, many substances abused today were considered legal (Hart & Kisir, 2011). For example, marijuana usage has been documented through history and was even widely used for medicinal purposes between 1850 and 1937 (Casa Palmera, 2009). Recently, marijuana has gained favor again as a means of reducing pain for individuals suffering the ravages of cancer and in some states has even been deemed legal for this purpose (Norml, 2012). Even amphetamines were widely distributed to members of the United States armed forces during World War II to aid against fatigue and improve stamina and morale (2009). However, illegal drug use in the United States continues to be a significant issue. A study done by the National Drug Intelligence Center (2011) indicated that in 2007, illicit drug use’s economic impact in the United States was close to $200 billion. The Present Time
Today, one of the...