Presentation Title

A Legal Paradox: The Illegal Nature of Drug Laws and the War on Drugs

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

School

School of Sciences and Social Sciences

Discipline

Criminal Justice Studies

Mentor

Peter Stevenson

Date & Time

April 9th at 3:15 PM - 4:15 PM

Location

David F. Putnam Science Center, Room 163

Abstract

The war on drugs has been deemed a failure, causing significantly more harm than it has attempted to prevent. This failure is accepted not only by criminologists but also by the general public who have become increasingly aware of the negative externalities and arbitrary nature of these laws. A synthesis of historical and sociological accounts of the origins of drug laws, and thus the war on drugs, provide the basis for an in-depth analysis of how they originated through illegitimate means and stand in contradiction to other laws and activities in which the United States has been involved. Using a critical criminological perspective, this research contends that the continuation of drug laws and the war on drugs is a state crime. A comprehensive selection of possible alternatives, with positive and negative aspects of each, is discussed along with a unique comparative perspective of possible consequences of legalization.

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Apr 9th, 3:15 PM

A Legal Paradox: The Illegal Nature of Drug Laws and the War on Drugs

David F. Putnam Science Center, Room 163

The war on drugs has been deemed a failure, causing significantly more harm than it has attempted to prevent. This failure is accepted not only by criminologists but also by the general public who have become increasingly aware of the negative externalities and arbitrary nature of these laws. A synthesis of historical and sociological accounts of the origins of drug laws, and thus the war on drugs, provide the basis for an in-depth analysis of how they originated through illegitimate means and stand in contradiction to other laws and activities in which the United States has been involved. Using a critical criminological perspective, this research contends that the continuation of drug laws and the war on drugs is a state crime. A comprehensive selection of possible alternatives, with positive and negative aspects of each, is discussed along with a unique comparative perspective of possible consequences of legalization.