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NCJ Number: 150230 Find in a Library
Title: Ice Age: The Social Construction of a Drug Panic
Journal: Justice Quarterly  Volume:11  Issue:1  Dated:(March 1994)  Pages:7-31
Author(s): P Jenkins
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 25
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article suggests that drug scares follow broadly similar patterns in which the public is told through various media that the drug in question is currently enjoying an explosion in popularity, that it is extremely addictive and even occasional use can cause addiction, and that the drug has very harmful psychological and physical side effects.
Abstract: In 1989 and 1990, the U.S. experienced a short-lived panic related to the alleged increase in the use of smokable methamphetamine, also known as ice. The concern about ice was not sustained, and media references to the subject died down within a few months. This author argues that the use of ice was originally a localized event, restricted to Hawaii, and that the words "epidemic" and "explosion" in relation to its use arose from partisan and bureaucratic rivalries within the State. The emergence of a national fear was made possible by the existence of specialized agencies and investigative bodies focusing on drug issues and the intensification of public fears following the crack scare. This article examines the rhetoric of ice, the analogy made between ice and cocaine, and the way in which public officials constructed the ice danger. These elements are likely to lead to other ephemeral drug scares in the future. 1 table, 1 note, and 74 references
Main Term(s): Drug law enforcement
Index Term(s): Controlled Substances; Media coverage; Public Attitudes/Opinion
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