Blogs > Liberty and Power > Does the War on People Who Use Certain Kinds of Drugs Have Anything to Do with This?

Feb 28, 2008 11:41 pm

Does the War on People Who Use Certain Kinds of Drugs Have Anything to Do with This?

The Associated Press is reporting that for the first time in history more than one out of every one hundred American adults is in prison, 2,319,258 people overall. This of course is causing enormous expense with just the states spending more than $49 billion last year. Also, there is a racial component with one in thirty white males between the ages of 20 and 34 years old being behind bars, while the numbers for black males of the same age group is one in nine.

Cross posted on The Trebach Report

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Keith Halderman - 3/1/2008

I agree with your analysis.

Anthony Gregory - 2/29/2008

Surely, the US gulag system is largely a product of the drug war, with about 1/4 of the inmates in there for drugs. But there is more to the problem than that. Americans are addicted to the idea of throwing people in prison, and to the short-term, concentrated economic benefits of the prison-industrial complex. If we took the 2 million or so people behind bars and really looked at how many should be there, rather than either left alone in peace or, in many cases, compelled to pay restitution to their victims — if we whittled it down to the truly dangerous people for whom there is no better solution than sticking them in a cage – I bet we'd be looking at a tenth the number of prisoners, if not less. The whole system has got to go, along with the police state. Ending the war on drugs is absolutely necessary to restoring liberty and civil society, but, at this point, it is unfortunately not sufficient.