I try to stay away from politics and delicate social issues but this topic has been on my mind a lot lately. I would just like to say a few quick things, and I invite you to share your own opinions and perspectives in the comments below.
- 500,000 people die of addiction every year.
- We, The United States, have imprisoned more than 43 million people for nonviolent drug offenses.
As someone who has known many people who’ve become addicts, some of which have been incarcerated, I have a strong opinion on the “War on Drugs” and the system we use to address addiction.
“California ranks No. 1 when it comes to the raw number of drug-overdose deaths — more than 4,600 victims in 2015, a trend primarily driven by opioids.” (source)
My own personal experiences have led me to feel that it would be best for the citizens of our country if we decriminalize drugs and put more emphasis on treating addiction.
We should be treating addiction as a public health issue, not a criminal justice issue. In the last 40 years, we have spent $1.3 trillion in this “war” and we have accomplished nothing.
A portion of my taxes goes to prisons, more specifically the inmates. I would prefer to use that money to pay for treatments so they can be reintegrated into society, rather than getting drawn into a system of repeated offenses.
I know this is controversial. However, more than 50% of my audience on this website is from outside the United States (the next top countries are Egypt, Brazil, and France) and so I try to make a point to share my perspectives on topics that are prominent in my country’s current climate.
For my readers outside of the U.S., how does your country deal with drugs, specifically, nonviolent offenders?
For my readers in the U.S., what are your thoughts on this matter?
Thanks for reading and I encourage you all to share your opinions and experiences below so that we can all work towards having a better understanding of the world we find ourselves in 🙂