How Drug Trafficking Effects the United States

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ENG 122
March 11, 2012

How Drug Trafficking Effects the United States

Drug trafficking in the United States has established itself to be one of the most profitable businesses in today’s world (U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, 2004). There is such a high demand as more people buy, use and sell drugs for a variety of reasons, not really knowing all the risk that are at stake. With new laws in affect and more determined citizens of the U.S. everyone can help keep the streets clean. Drug trafficking is at an all-time high and must be brought to a halt.

The country’s borders make the most important part in the process of reducing drug trafficking in the U.S. Drug law enforcement agencies face enormous challenges when it comes to protecting the country’s borders because drugs are brought in the U.S. through a variety of ways, and through diverse groups. Each year according to the U.S. Customs Service, millions of people enter the U.S. on commercial, private planes, by sea, land, and through merchant and passenger ships, along with millions of containers and cargo that are said to be used in drug trafficking (U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, 2004).

Drug Trafficking refers to the production, selling, transportation, and illegal import of unlawful controlled substances (Alcohol, Tobacco, and illicit drugs, 2008). Trafficked drugs are dated back to the early 19th century where drugs, were and still is being produced in thousands of countries around the world. Many popular drugs that are being used today were produced and used back then also, but mostly only for medical reasons. Many of the restricted drugs today were once completely legal, including marijuana, cocaine, heroin, LSD also known as acid, opium and methamphetamine just to name a few. The United States law enforcement has been working very diligently to reduce the imported drugs that are being distributed throughout the neighborhoods of this country. Among all the traffic in and out of the U.S. here are the most common drugs that traffickers conceal: cocaine, heroin, marijuana, ecstasy and Methamphetamine (US Drug Enforcement Agency, 2004).

At this point the demand of the drug business is so high it is nearly impossible to completely put an end to drug trafficking because this business alone brings in billions of dollars each year. Legalizing drugs would result in a skyrocketing cost that would be paid by American taxpayers and consumers and would quickly increase crime and social problems, especially amongst teens because according to the U.S. Department of Justice, hardly anyone in America begins using drugs after age twenty-one. So if an individual does not smoke, use drugs or abuse alcohol by age twenty-one it is certain he or she will never do so. Most traffickers understand this, which is why they fight to kill efforts and different programs (such as the D.A.R.E program) to keep their drugs away from kids/young teens. D.A.R.E was founded in 1983 and has been in effect for twenty-nine years to help teach kids and young adults the importance of drug abuse/use. The D.A.R.E program is offered in all fifty states but however it may not be offered in every city within that state. There are other programs offered through various communities to help fight and raise awareness against kid/teenage drug abuse.

According to the National Drug Control in the year 2000, drug abuse cost American society an estimated 160 billion dollars. Drug abuse and prevention programs are America’s most costly social problems including child abuse, domestic violence, chronic mental illnesses, and rapid spread of HIV/AIDS, homelessness, drug treatment cost and hospitalization for long-term drug-related illnesses/diseases. Criminal justice laws would likely increase as well if drugs are legalized. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, six times as many homicides are committed by people under the influence of drugs as by those who are looking for money to buy drugs....
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