DISCLAIMER *This post is going to be short and to the point because I am doing it as part of a 3o day challenge, not to persuade people to my side of the drugs and alcohol argument.*
Straight off I am going to agree that drugs and alcohol cause problems in society. I am not going to defend the use of hard drugs and irresponsibly consumed alcohol. However, I believe that people with drug and alcohol problems should be helped, not punished.
My first issue is with marijuana usage. I don’t believe it should be illegal, especially if alcohol is legal. I believe that marijuana is far less harmful (by itself) than alcohol, though it still impairs judgment and consciousness and should still be illegal to be intoxicated with it while driving, anything that can MAKE marijuana more harmful.
My second issue is with hard drugs like cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine. For drug possession charges I believe that current jail/prison sentences are way too harsh. Drug users can spend decades in prison without getting any real help. I think rehab should be an option for first and second time offenders, and if they still are continuing the behavior, more and more prison time.
My third issue, with alcohol, is more fuzzy to me. Some people have problems with alcohol and some people who drink alcohol don’t have problems with it. The United States seems to have far more issues with alcohol (DUI’s, public intoxication, etc.) than other countries who seem to have more alcohol consumption, for example, Ireland. (If I am wrong on this assumption, PLEASE let me know with a reliable reference in the comments. THANKS!) I think there are too many people getting three, four, five, PLUS DUI’s and still getting off with slaps on the wrist. One or maybe even two, send them to rehab. After that, more and more jail time and no license. First try to help, but, as with drugs, if it is apparent that help is not being accepted, then I believe prison is necessary.