War on Drugs

Should nonviolent drug users be subject to arrest?


President Bush's anti-drug campaign has increasingly focused on a law-enforcement model that attacks the “supply side” of the illegal drug industry — traffickers, smugglers and users — rather than on helping users through prevention and treatment, the so-called demand side. He also would like more middle and high schools to conduct random drug tests, although few have signed on. And although the Food and Drug Administration in April declared that smoked marijuana lacks any known medicinal properties, 12 states now bar state prosecution of those who use marijuana for medical purposes. The number of people arrested annually on marijuana-related charges has skyrocketed — from 400,000 in the 1980s to about 700,000 — partly because low-level drug offenders now can be diverted to one of more ...

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