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NCJ Number: 156588 Find in a Library
Title: Should Drugs Be Legalized? Implications of the Debate for the Mental Health Field
Journal: Hospital and Community Psychiatry  Volume:42  Issue:2  Dated:(February 1991)  Pages:119-120,125
Author(s): R J Frances
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 3
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper presents arguments for and against drug legalization and suggests guidelines for an improved drug control strategy.
Abstract: Proponents emphasize the individual's right to free choice, regard current efforts as useless, and suggest that taxes on legalized drugs could pay for treatment and prevention. They argue that legalization could remove the profit motive, reduce marketing of currently illegal substances, make drugs seem less like forbidden fruit, help destigmatize addicts, and reduce drug-related crime and criminal justice costs. Opponents argue that legalization would lead to increased use and addiction, that no amount of treatment resources will be effective, and that no moral distribution system is practical. Historical examples of societies in which certain drugs were legal support the estimate of increased use. In addition, profits could still be gained through illegal distribution, and current treatments could not offset the rapid rise in medical and psychiatric complications that would accompany increased drug use. However, a strong argument can be made for improving treatment resources and to increase research and prevention. 7 references
Main Term(s): Drug legalization
Index Term(s): Drug Policy
Note: DCC
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