The United States’ current version of their War on Drugs fails miserably because the problem of drug abuse is a health issue. Categorizing an illness as a crime makes the situation worse by introducing unnecessary problems. Instead of policy posturing to demonstrate a “get tough” approach on drugs, the US should get smart and reform laws to resemble those in countries like Portugal.
The current administration has indicated they’re open to change. However, simply making arrests a “low priority” doesn’t go nearly far enough. Decriminalization will coax more citizens suffering from addiction to seek treatment. As well, non-enforcement indicates a corruption of the law itself. If enforcement causes problems, the solution isn’t to ignore the law but to change it, so that its existence is just and beneficial to society.