In the United States, the debate over drug legalization has been raging for many years. How much worse off would the US be if drugs like marijuana and cocaine were legalized? Some economists (such as Milton Friedman) have pointed out the link between unnecessary government involvement and the unforeseen impact on the drug market. Because the government gets involved with drug control, punishing those who use drugs by throwing them in jail, they are disrupting the lives of people who aren’t really hurting anyone else but themselves.
legalization of drugs: Is the Idea Farfetched?
Friedman brings up a great point, explaining that the government intervenes with those who abuse drugs by saying that it’s “bad” for them. As a result of people doing something that is “bad” for their bodies, they are taken to jail. The threat of being punished with jail time makes drugs more expensive, which causes those who use drugs to seek alternative means of getting them, thereby increasing the crime rate, etc. It seems to be a vicious cycle, perpetuated by the government sticking its nose where it doesn’t necessarily belong.
After all, there are other things, Friedman points out, that people do which are bad for them. He gives the example of the obesity epidemic in the United States. More people die from overeating than from drug use, and overeating is just as bad, if not worse, than using drugs. Therefore, why aren’t people being arrested for it?
What have been the effects of marijuana decriminalization in the US?
The effects of marijuana decriminalization in the United States have been mixed. While some states have seen decreases in crime and increases in tax revenue, others have experienced little change. There is still much disagreement over whether or not decriminalization is the best policy for dealing with marijuana use.
Opponents of decriminalization argue that it sends the wrong message to young people and increases drug use. They also point to the fact that marijuana is still illegal under federal law, which creates a confusing patchwork of laws across the country.
Supporters of decriminalization say that it takes a burden off of the criminal justice system and allows police to focus on more serious crimes. They also argue that it would save taxpayers money by reducing the number of people incarcerated for nonviolent offenses.
The debate over decriminalization is likely to continue as more states experiment with different approaches to marijuana policy.
effects of drug legalization
The potential effects of drug legalization in the US are varied and complex. While proponents argue that it would lead to less crime and fewer drug-related problems, opponents assert that it would increase drug use and related crimes. There is little evidence to support either side definitively. However, research suggests that drug legalization could have a number of positive outcomes, including:
- Reducing drug-related violence
- Decreasing the number of people incarcerated for drug offenses
- Generating revenue through taxation
It is important to note that drug legalization would not eliminate all drug-related problems, but it could potentially reduce them. Is it worth it? Opinions seem to vary on that question. Some people believe that any potential benefits of drug legalization would be outweighed by the negative consequences. In contrast, others believe that the pros outweigh the cons. There is no easy answer, and ultimately it is up to each individual to decide what they believe.
Addiction Treatment Will Always Be Necessary, No Matter What Happens
Regardless of whether drugs (especially weed) become legal or not, the need for addiction treatment will never really go away. People will always find a way to get their hands on drugs, and addiction will always be a problem to some degree.
This is why it’s so important to have effective addiction treatment options available. No matter what happens at the state or federal level regarding drugs like weed, there will always be people who need help overcoming their addiction.
Watch the video below to see exactly what Milton Friedman’s thoughts were on drugs, substance abuse, and whether or not they should be legalized. What do you think? For more information about drug and alcohol treatment, please visit The Right Step today!