Argumentative Essay on Drugs


Argumentative essay on drugs

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Sample of Argumentative Essay on Drugs

One of the first international organizations to reach within the frontiers of member states of the League of Nations, and now the United Nations, is the machinery that controls the manufacture and international trade in addictive drugs. As a piece of bureaucracy, it is impressive and serves as a valuable model for other international endeavours, such as the control of nuclear energy; as a method of preventing addiction and illicit drug use throughout the world, it is singularly ineffective.

A thorough account of its operation would be tedious. It is enough to say that in theory the member countries submit yearly estimates of their manufacture and consumption of some eighty dependence-producing drugs. An elaborate sum then shows what has gone astray; the nation responsible is invited to explain itself. The major defect of this system is that illicit manufacturers submit no estimates, and until 1961 no country was obliged to report its growth of poppy. Even now many countries where much poppy is grown have not the internal organization to make this report. In its broad effects the system of treaties, conferences and conventions has slowly driven the manufacture of heroin-the most compact opiate--back into the East, nearer to the poppy fields. But any successes in controlling addiction, such as Japan's or Formosa's before the war, are due to individual rather than collective effort.

This mechanism has only secondary effects in Britain. When the machinery was being constructed during the thirties, our domestic drug problem was negligible. We were able to accede to the most demanding treaties, and were glad to, both as an example to more indulgent nations, and so that we could apply the most rigorous standards in our own colonies. In particular we were anxious to repress a subversive Egyptian sub-culture that centered on hashish. It seems, that but for the needs of empire, we would not have proscribed hashish, and we would now have no cannabis problem. Since our heroin problem is home-grown, and state-financed (directly attributable, with much of the rest of the world's addiction problems, to our refusal to let China ban opium in the 1830s, and to our Opium War victory of 1842), international control of drugs is irrelevant to our troubles. If, by some disaster of public policy, we allow a real black market to arise here, there is no reason to suppose that the United Nations Narcotics Commission will cause traffickers much difficulty in getting supplies from abroad….

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