Social Construction Of Drug Abusers

1781 Words 8 Pages
Drug has existed since the beginning of American History. Drugs such as caffeine and alcohol has become part of American socialization, children grow up watching parents drinking alcohol. Most of the drug users uses drugs in social settings or due to peer pressure. In this society, there are many stigma and myths around drugs and drug abusers. Certain drug users, mostly Blacks and low income individuals, are often portrayed as murderer, abuser, thief. Anti-Drug laws did nothing, but increased in prison population and anarchy. Anti-Drug war of 1986 has been promoting discrimination against race and class and stigma around drug abusers. These laws have created unfair system for many individuals who come from different race and class. This …show more content…
Most of these stigma and myth have stemmed from Anti-Drug War campaign. According Reinarman, none of the drug laws accomplished the goal. “I have found no evidence that any scare actually accomplished those ends, but they did greatly expand the quantity and quality of social control, particularly over subordinate groups perceived as dangerous or threatening” (Reinarman). Drug scare only strengthened the discrimination against certain minority group. In the article named “The Social Construction of Drug Scares”, discusses about 7 myths such as, a kernel of truth, media magnification, politico-moral entrepreneurs, professional interest groups, historical context of conflict, linking a form of drug use to a “dangerous class”, scapegoating a drug for a wide array of public problems. A kernel of truth suggest that human has been using pharmaceutical drugs, chemicals are not unique to the society (Reinarman). Media magnification claims that media dramatized and exaggerated many drug cases as the do with many other news. In addition to that, Reinarman argues that politicians deflect public attentions on matters that they might have to take responsibility. Politicians also controls the media and media exaggerates the problem. Professional company’s such as Pharmaceutical Associations, American Medical Association, scientists etc. pushes their agenda with drug laws. Historical context of conflict shows that Temperance movement made alcohol legal in U.S. History demonstrates that war against only causes chaos. Drugs are linked to minority groups and media exaggerating and accusing the drug users of committing crimes such as rape, murder, robbery etc. (Reinarman). The crack disparity created racial and class segregation. In the article named, “Crack in the Rearview Mirror” Reinarman discuss how crack myth effected the population. There is belief that crack is different, but crack and cocaine has the same chemical compound.

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