Persuasive Essay On The Criminal Justice System

911 Words 4 Pages
Our nation is plagued with a disease and it must be contained before it spreads. The world is not safe with sick people, running loose, amongst our civilized society. We have to control this epidemic, we must build more cages.
This seems to be the mindset of America’s criminal justice system when it comes to people who struggle with drug addiction, but locking them away in cages doesn’t solve the problem, it only makes things worse. According to former Federal Prosecutor Paul Butler “Imprisoning young non-violent drug offenders with murderers and rapists was like sending them to finishing school for criminals. The drug war costs billions of dollars we cannot afford, and it’s just
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The numbers make it seem like the justice system is putting a huge dent in the drug trade and addiction problem but if we look at the numbers from 2001 to present an approximated 1.5 million people are arrested each year and almost 50% of the charges are marijuana related (United States). If this has been the case over a 10 year span clearly it is going to continue to follow the same pattern in the future.
Each year our government spends more than 5.1 billion dollars (“Drug War Statistics”) on fighting the war on drugs but what do we have to show for it if the rate of addiction hasn’t changed and “it’s just as easy to get drugs now as it has always been?” Couldn’t the money be better spent on creating better awareness programs and addiction treatment
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If we throw enough money into it we can eliminate the sources of drug production, get rid of street dealers, and effectively heal the addiction problems in America. However after 40 years of increased budget spending with no clear end in sight, we have to consider a new approach to addiction. Where there is a demand for something there will always be someone willing to take the risk necessary to supply it, even if that means risking jail time or even their life. The only thing our laws do is make the drug business more lucrative which has been known to turn even the most honest of people into drug dealers. So yes, we can continue to build more cages and lock people up, we can tighten drug laws and make the prices go up, but at the end of the day all we are doing is imprisoning our people while drug cartels continue to rake in money off of America’s addiction problem. Or we can decriminalize drugs, offer better treatment programs, cut off the money going to cartels and other violent gangs, and we could focus on taking the humanitarian approach of helping people who are in need of our help. –Sean

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