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American Criminal Justice and War on Drugs
American Criminal Justice and War on Drugs
James P. Gray, a California based trial court judge in his book Why Our Drug Laws Have Failed and What We Can Do About It: A Judicial Indictment of the War on Drugs believes that war on drugs has been a subject of failure. This regards its impact on society and on its own terms mainly on the stopping of use of illegal drugs. As a former federal prosecutor and an experienced trial judge who briefly held a record for the largest drug prosecution in the Central District of California, he authoritatively speaks about the issues related to the drugs war. He uses a compelling language to describe the war on drugs as exemplified in the opening words of his book. He states that that it is inevitable that the drug policies will eventually change. However, when this happens, people will be left back looking astonished that the former policies had prevailed for the extended period. He compares it to Jim Crow laws, slavery, or the days when women never voted.
In the United States the raging debate on the criminal law proper role in drug control does not centralize around the usual political geography left verses right divisions. A civil war of ideas for generations has been waged between the libertarian and their American right opponents of state drug control and more order conservatives and traditional law. Around 1990 at the zenith of the American drug war, prominent libertarian and conservatives intellectuals provided extreme state control leadership example Milton Friedman who came to be known for his radical deregulations and William Bennett for being the first drug tsar and based on their ideas the deprofitization proposal stated by James P. Gray finds its basis.
The current American treatment of drugs in the criminal justice mainly the surrounding events on the issue reveal that the fear centralizes largely on the notion that many people would support taking the drugs under a legal and supervised regime. However, this presumption may not be correct since there is no direct correlation between the drug-trafficking incidence and the harshness of drug laws. If considered from this aspect legalization that Judge James P. Gray proposes in theory might be able to regulate and even reduce both supply and demand of the drugs (Gray, 2001).
The impact the implementation of the legalization would have on the drug control would be to transform the drugs issue from a law and order related problem to a public health issue. It would also help drive away the gangsters. In addition, the regulated drug tax implemented by the government will ensure that raised funds are effectively redirected into other economic sectors like education, which focus on public education and the risks and treatment of addicts of the substance abuse. The government will also realize that different drugs need different levels of regulations and taxation. The difficulty in this system would be imperfect and fiddly that would require monitoring constantly hard to measure tradeoffs and constant monitoring. Other levels of post-tax prices should be set as a means of striking a balance between discouraging desperate acts and a black market in which prostitution and thefts in which addicts often resort to maintain their habits and damping down use (Gray, 2001).
The main arguments that Judge Gray offers center on utilitarian aspects that go against prohibition of drugs. He states that the enacted laws that should address the prohibition of drugs are not effective, but instead help in the eroding of civil liberties, and the prohibition of drugs is a leading cause of democratic debate stifling mainly over the drug policies, and in this manner increases the danger to the users. In summary, the author stops short of advocating for full implementation of drug legalization through his preferred solutions of a combination of treatment programs, realistic education, punishment for harm to others, regulated sales of drugs (Hakim, 2011).
Thinking of this, proposed notion of legalization requires thinking on the possible issues associated with drug use. Under the influence of the drugs, some users tend to harm possible third parties an example is on marijuana users. A well-established principal of criminal law and tort exists to handle such harms. Reviewing the response of how the principals of legal drug market would apply include seeing advertisements that would support responsible drug use. In addition, there would be a clear incentive for the drug manufacturers to directly invest in the drugs developing mainly on substances that provide lesser risks and short-term high effects that would not impair its social .............
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