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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 136343 Find in a Library
Title: Hidden Face of Drugs
Journal: Social Justice  Volume:18  Issue:4  Dated:(Winter 1991)  Pages:10-48
Author(s): R del Olmo
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 19
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The ways in which drugs are discussed has increased the confusion surrounding the subjects of drugs, drug abuse, and drug regulation and overlooks its real social, psychological, and political-economic dimensions.
Abstract: The various discourses have created the stereotypes that are the best expression of informal social control and that are necessary to formal social control. Medical discourse views the drug addict as sick and drugs as an epidemic, creating a stereotype of dependence. The cultural stereotype views drug abuses as youthful addicts who willingly or unwillingly oppose the consensus, depending on whether they are at-risk or poor. The moral stereotype regards addicts as vicious or lazy and drugs as a scourge or forbidden pleasure. Legislation regarding drugs has created a fourth stereotype, the political-criminal stereotype. Different stereotypes have prevailed in different decades since the 1950's, when drugs were not generally perceived as a problem. During the 1980's, drugs became a priority issue for policymakers in both the United States and Latin America, with the cocaine stereotype and the political-criminal stereotypes prevailing. These approaches have concealed the political and economic issues, including sugar quotas and United States policy toward coffee, which must be addressed to resolve the drug problems of the hemisphere. Notes and 99 references
Main Term(s): Drug abuse; Drug regulation
Index Term(s): Drug law offenses; Foreign policies; Latin America
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