Smoke and Mirrors: The War on Drugs And The Politics of Failure.
Bertram, Blachman, Sharpe, & Andreas. Drug War Politics: The Price of Denial.
Reinarman & Levine. Crack in America.
Zimmer and Morgan. Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts .
Section 1: Discussion of the Problem.
1. The history of drug policy began in 1969 under the presidency of Richard Nixon. Nixon was looking for a way to decrease crime in the Washington D.C. area. He felt that drugs caused violent behavior and to lower crime, you need to decrease drug use. Marijuana laws went into effect. These laws were used to lock up people that the police didn't want on the street instead of rather than to make an impact on stopping the use of drugs. Blacks, hippies, and teens were targeted. Nixon felt that drugs are bad, so bad people do drugs. While heroin was surfacing and becoming the big drug, Nixon ruled marijuana as being relatively safe, however illegal. He also legalized the methadone clinics, enabling users who wanted to become clean to do so at the government and taxpayer's expense. .
Jimmy Carter saw drug use as a health problem. While Carter wasn't very active in the drug war, small amounts of drugs were decriminalized nationwide. Carter's drug policies were based on a doctrine developed in Europe that stated that the government would never stop drug use, so they should work on preventing the harm of usage. Carter saw marijuana as the nations biggest problem.
Like Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan believed drug use was a moral problem. Under the drug policies of the Reagan Administration, the Justice Department gave the government the right to seize assets (such as cars, boats, bank accounts, stock portfolios, anything suspected to be derived for drug profits) then present notice; the authority to seize substitute assets; and end the law which prevented evidence obtained illegally by the police from being used in court. The new laws gave prosecutors the right to confiscate the monetary funds that might be used to obtain legal counsel.