APPROACHES TO STUDY WITH ENGLISH LANGUAGE SUPPORT (INTENSIVE) Assignment 1: Critical analysis of a published article (1000 words) Saturday 10th October 2009
By Joana Wong
This critical analysis is about an article that argues whether drugs should be legalized or not. It was published in The Observer, on Sunday the 6th of September 2009 and it is entitled "Latin America's backlash against US war on drugs" by Ed Vulliamy in Tijuana, Rory Carroll in Caracas, Annie Kelly in Buenos Aires and Tom Phillips in Rio de Janeiro. It is a lengthy article, written in a Sunday newspaper for a well-educated and informed audience. It is evident that the reporter has researched the subject well, for example he starts the article with and interview of a 40 year old web designer (among others), he gives us various statistics and also an overview of what has been happening in the last few decades all over Latin America. The main purpose is to enlighten people about the decriminalisation of drugs and its benefits. On the other hand, it also points out different dangers that come with it. My interest regarding this particular article is related to the fact that I sometimes enjoy smoking cannabis, making this a matter that concerns me directly. Moreover, Washigtons' meddling all over the world is an issue that calls my attention, so the title of the article immediately drew me to it. The author presents the argument that the problem of drugs has to be debated in different ways instead of revolving in being more or less repressive. One of his main arguments is that decriminalisation will help the state to focus on catching major traffickers and arresting them in the place of petty addticts. He also shows us why some politicians, researchers and activists are against the US war on drugs. Quoting ; "for South American countries, the 'harm' from drugs comes less from drug use than the war against producers and traffickers", Benjamin Lessing, a University of California...
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