United States Prohibition Policies
This paper explores the impact of social and cultural attitudes on drug laws in the United States, 1865-1930.
# 117534 | 1,319 words | 3 sources | MLA | 2008 |
Published on Dec 08, 2009 in History (U.S. After 1865) , Political Science (U.S.) , History (U.S. 1900-1930) , Criminology (Drugs Enforcement)
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The paper outlines the history of the prohibitions of alcoholic beverages, marijuana, cocaine and opiates in the United States. The paper discusses how, although alcohol came to be prohibited after it was associated with unpopular ethnic groups, it continued to be favorably viewed by mainstream society and so its prohibition was unsuccessful. The paper then shows how marijuana is the closest to overcoming its prohibition since marijuana is used by enough middle-class Americans to be seen as comparatively harmless, but there are no real prospects for relaxation of the prohibitions of cocaine and opiates because both of these drugs remain culturally unacceptable. The paper therefore highlights how the different experiences with prohibitions of all four drugs show the importance of social and cultural attitudes in making drug prohibitions acceptable and enforceable.
From the Paper:"Drug policies in the United States changed drastically from the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century. The use of alcoholic beverages, cocaine, opiates, and marijuana was considered a part of everyday life in the late 1800's among at least some ethnic and cultural groups. However, by the 1920s, the use of all of these drugs was prohibited by the United States government. All four of these drugs initially were made illegal for similar reasons: movements against specific ethnic groups and fear of the drugs' effects. Today, cocaine, opiates and marijuana remain prohibited, but the prohibition on alcohol was lifted less than two decades after being imposed. Much more recently, there has been movement toward repeal or lightening of the prohibition on marijuana. The different experiences with prohibitions of all four drugs show the importance of social and cultural attitudes in making drug prohibitions acceptable and enforceable."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Pegram, Thomas R. Battling Demon Rum. Chicago, IL: Ivan R. Dee, 1998.
- Schaler, Jeffrey A., ed. Drugs: Should We Legalize, Decriminalize, or Deregulate? New York: Prometheus Books, 1998. 17-25.
- Himmelstein, Jerome L., The Strange Career of Marihuana, 1983, Westport CT & London, Greenwood Press, PP. 49-75, 98-136.
Cite this Analytical Essay:
United States Prohibition Policies (2009, December 08) Retrieved April 18, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/united-states-prohibition-policies-117534/
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