General Question

Carinaponcho's avatar

Why are drugs illegal?

Asked by Carinaponcho (1369 points ) February 5th, 2013 from iPhone

I am looking for true statements, not opinions. Why are drugs illegal?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

87 Answers

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

Because most of them are very dangerous, and can be deadly.

flo's avatar

-They are harmfull to your body, they can kill you
-They help the criminals who end up killing people to support their habit, and to pay their debts to sharks.
Just 2 out of many.

Crumpet's avatar

Drugs like heroin are highly addictive and seriously bad for your health. A heroin addict will steal or do what ever they can to get hold of it.
They can also be very dangerous because they are often made by unqualified chemists.
They are also cut with other substances in order to bulk them up.
Even things like weed is often sprayed with fiberglass to make it look more potent.

Drugs are baaad mmmkay?

Carinaponcho's avatar

@WillWorkForChocolate can’t many things be considered dangerous and deadly? Does the government have a right to tell us what we can and cannot put in our bodies?

Carinaponcho's avatar

@crumpet If drugs were legal, wouldn’t there be organizations ensuring the purity of the ingredients? They have these for cigarette companies. They would be less dangerous if they were government regulated and monitored.

Mariah's avatar

I agree that victimless crimes should not be crimes, personally.

Carinaponcho's avatar

@flo Would these sharks exist if they were legal?

Carinaponcho's avatar

Disclaimer! I am merely debating. I’m not saying that these are my beliefs. Please nobody start to attack.

Gabby101's avatar

@Carinaponcho, I think the problem is how addicted people impact the rest of society – they are generally unproductive and unable to pay taxes and are a drain on society. Even worse, they may turn to illegal means to support their habits or commit crimes because they are high. Also, addicted people are not good parents and addicted kids don’t learn well. Pot isn’t as addictive as other drugs, which is probably why people are pushing for legalization – more so than meth, e.g.

I think there are good arguments for drugs being legal. I would rather collect the taxes on the drugs and use that to treat addicts and fight drug related crime vs. what we have going on now. I’m not sure how that would impact addiction rates though. I guess if pot were legal, I might buy it at the 7–11, but wouldn’t be up for trying to buy it illegally (I don’t know how to do that anymore!), but I wouldn’t try meth even if I could get it at the Piggly-Wiggly ;)

livelaughlove21's avatar

I have personally never used an illegal drug and I don’t think very much of people that choose to do so. I’m also planning to go into law enforcement after graduation. I know what drugs do to people – I’ve seen it. Being intoxicated on hard drugs can lead people to do things they may not do otherwise and they can harm themselves and others in the process. There’s no reason for drugs like heroine to be legalized. They are harmful to your body, they fuck with your mind and, in many cases, they fuck with your life as well as the lives of those around you. Victimless crimes, my ass.

However, let’s me honest. A big reason these drugs will never be legalized is because law enforcement makes money off of drug arrests/convictions. Narcotics divisions employ people that would not have jobs if drugs were legal. It’s all about money when you get down to it – just like with everything else.

Carinaponcho's avatar

@Gabby101 that is a great response. Thank You.

Crumpet's avatar

@Carinaponcho yeah if they were legal then there would be ‘safer’ ingrediants added.
People need to be educated more about drugs though i think.
I did ecstasy while i was at university and i had a great night, but when i got into bed i could hear my heart pounding in my ears and i thought i was going to die.
It was enough to think to myself ‘yeah that was cool, but scary and I’m not doing it again’

Carinaponcho's avatar

@livelaughlove21 I understand why the hard drugs should be illegal. But something like marijuana? What if the government could tax the hell out of it just like it does for everything else?

El_Cadejo's avatar

@livelaughlove21 while I dont agree with your point of view, I do agree as to why you believe their illegal. The government simply makes far too much money with them being illegal.

@Crumpet “Even things like weed is often sprayed with fiberglass to make it look more potent.” Bullshit. Sources please.

I dont like the “because theyre harmful” argument.Some are yes, but not all of them. Look at this chart notice where LSD, MDMA and marijuana are. Notice where tobacco and alcohol are. “If the government cared about your health alcohol and cigarettes would be off the shelf”

Carinaponcho's avatar

@Crumpet I agree with you in that people are not educated enough about drugs. Health class for me consisted of “If you have sex you will get pregnant and ruin your life. If you do drugs you will fry your brain and you will be a terrible person. Anything fun is the devil and you need to focus on school and extra curricular activities.” While this is good because is emphasizes some good things, the false information we were told was astonishing.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Carinaponcho My answer to that is that it probably won’t be illegal for much longer. We’re getting there.

My guess is that any weed sold in stores will be expensive and less potent, so people will still purchase it from dealers or grow it themselves – therefore, the government gets nothing for it and pot heads get what they want. And this would probably make them pretty happy.

Carinaponcho's avatar

@uberbatman Thank you for that chart. It is very helpful. I would like to show that to all my old health teachers.

Crumpet's avatar

@uberbatman its not bullshit, it’s quite common here in the uk. Google search ‘cannabis fiberglass’ and you will find plenty of discussions on the topic.
If i wanted to bullshit i would have gone on yahoo answers.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@uberbatman How exactly is physical harm measured on a scale of 0–3 here? Dependence as well. What is that based on?

I mean, I’m not saying this isn’t true, I’m just wondering how they claim to measure that on such a scale.

josie's avatar

Because people who fuck up their lives with drugs wind up demanding that the rest of us take care of them, and politicians satisfy the demand.
So instead of simply taking care of friends and family, we have to take care of them too- often against our sense of moral propriety.
I support making them legal but only if people are directly responsible for themselves when they become slaves to drugs.
Will this get me modded since its in general?

Carinaponcho's avatar

@livelaughlove21 You bring up a good point.

Carinaponcho's avatar

@josie I have to agree with you. And I hope not. I should have made it social not general, but I didn’t want a lot of hate against me for debating people.

ETpro's avatar

Some drugs, such as crack, meth and heroin are obviously debilitating to the user. They are highly addictive. Those unfortunate enough to become addicted soon cannot hold a job, and so turn to crime to fund their habit. So outlawing them serves a clear purpose in promoting the greater good.

Pot was first criminalized due to racism. It was used almost exclusively by Mexican and other Central and South American immigrants, so it gave WASP southern racists a way to attack a large group of people who were “ethnically challenged” in stealth mode, without appearing to be legislating against race. Instead they were protecting the public from the menacing threat of dope crazed fiends destroying all that is holy.

Psychedelic mushrooms got on the banned substance list in similar fashion. Plus they help unlock rational thinking in ways that challenged the BS propaganda so many politicians live and collect bribes by.

Carinaponcho's avatar

@ETpro thank you for a different and factual answer. I guess my question to you now is why is marijuana STILL illegal?

bookish1's avatar

Yet again, @ETpro says what I was going to say, only more eloquently.
In fact, I was just talking flippantly with a colleague tonight about how weed is illegal because it makes white people hang out with black people. The horror!

ETpro's avatar

@Carinaponcho Because the alcoholic beverage industry and the sugar industry pay a good deal of money to legislators to make sure it stays illegal. An alternative to booze that anybody with a sunny window can grow at home would be just as bad for Budweiser’s bottom line as Budweiser consumer in sufficient quantities is bad for my bottom line.

wildpotato's avatar

Different drugs were illegalized for different reasons.

Marijuana: because it is related to hemp, and hemp can be used to make paper and plastic (among other things), growing it in the US pose a threat to William Randolph Hearst and DuPont, who funded a lot of misleading studies. Also, racism. See this article.

LSD: This is an extremely detailed history of the drug. The most relevant bits are: “Many LSD researchers blamed Dr. Timothy Leary, a behavioral psychologist at Harvard, for the swift progression of policies that lead to the drug’s illegal status. It seems highly unlikely that one man could provoke such a crackdown, but then it again, it also seems improbable that a single person could ignite the dramatic cultural revolution of the 1960’s, as Leary arguably did…In 1962, the same year that Alpert and Leary were expelled from Harvard University, Congress enacted a law that made it virtually impossible for any person or organization, with the exceptions of the CIA and military, to obtain LSD for research purposes. In 1965, Congress passed the Drug Abuse Control Amendments under which the illicit manufacture and sale of LSD became a misdemeanor. In 1966, Senator Robert Kennedy, whose wife had successfully undergone LSD therapy, lead a congressional probe into the organization and coordination of federal drug research and regulatory programs. After this probe, Kennedy concluded that regulatory agencies were thwarting potentially valuable research. The FDA ignored Kennedy’s pleas for them to review the scientific reports pertaining to LSD. This data included approximately 1,000 clinical papers relating to 40,000 patients.” The final three paragraphs are also informative.

Carinaponcho's avatar

@ETpro You have quite a way with words! Thank you. But do you happen to have sources for your statements.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@livelaughlove21 I don’t know exactly to be honest. The chart came from this study but I can’t find the full thing online anywhere without paying. There is also this chart from a UK study but I’m unaware of how they calculated either.

@Crumpet From what I’ve read online it seems incredibly rare for that to happen in the UK as well. Sounds like a rare incident getting blown out of proportion or just people buying from shady sources. Know your source.

wildpotato's avatar

I forgot to explain why they remain illegal: in America, locking people up is a gold mine.

ETpro's avatar

@Carinaponcho My way with words is suffering a bit tonight as some powerful painkillers kick in post surgery. I’ll cite a few, but may need to do a more yeoman like job tomorrow.

Marijauana: Why is it illegal?
•     Marijuana’s illegal status attained through racism, fraud and greed
•     Truth: Marijuana illegal due to lies of racism, violence, and greed
•     Debunking the Hemp Conspiracy Theory

Magic Mushrooms: Why are they illegal?
•     Why are ’‘magic mushrooms’’ illegal
•     Legal status of psilocybin mushrooms
•     Psilocybin Mushrooms: Legal Status

While I linked to resources dealing with psilocybin mushrooms, the original thrust was toward peyote and mescaline. Other psychoactive ‘shrooms just got swept up in the action.

wildpotato's avatar

@ETpro I stand corrected on the hemp thing; thanks for that and the other great articles. Hope you feel better soon.

RockerChick14's avatar

Because they are deadly.

Luiveton's avatar

Why do you think they should be legal?

Carinaponcho's avatar

@Luiveton I don’t necessarily do. I am only debating. However if they were legal, they could be taxed by the government. The economy would improve as jobs in farming and producing sprang up. It would also mark an end to a lot of drug associated violence and illegal importing.

Carinaponcho's avatar

@RockerChick14 Some are deadly, but others are less harmful such as marijuana.

Carinaponcho's avatar

@ETpro I hope you recover swiftly from your surgery. My dad will have to have a Hernia surgery fairly soon but he’s been putting it off. Anyway, thank you for your links. I find them very helpful and informational.

rojo's avatar

There would not be as much money in them if they were legal. It’s a capitalist supply and demand thing.

sohel76435's avatar

Many drugs, such as bust, meth and heroin are obviously debilitating towards user. They are hugely addictive. Those unfortunate enough to be addicted soon cannot hold a position, and so turn to crime to fund their habit. So outlawing them serves a particular purpose in promoting greater good.

Pot was first criminalized caused by racism. It was used pretty much exclusively by Mexican along with Central and South Us immigrants, so it gave WASP southern racists methods to attack a large lot of people who were “ethnically challenged” with stealth mode, without appearing to be legislating against race. Instead we were looking at protecting the public on the menacing threat of dope crazed fiends destroying all of that is holy.

http://www.anyoption.com/

rojo's avatar

@sohel76435 And then justify sending them back home to Mexico after they had done all the picking and cleaning.

muhammajelly's avatar

Fines, fees, and court costs. Don’t forget the Prison Workers Union converts an awful lot of taxpayer money into political donations. Councilors, treatment centers, and other “experts” prescribed or smiled upon by the courts wouldn’t dare advise themselves out of a job.

flo's avatar

@Carinaponcho I stand corrected. I seem to have answered the Q “What is wrong with taking drugs?”

Carinaponcho's avatar

@flo That is okay. All input is welcome.

flo's avatar

Why do we expect so little from ourselves that the question seems to only be legal or illegal? Why are for example, artists esp.the ones in the public eye, in media too busy glamorizing drug consumption?

Carinaponcho's avatar

@flo I’m sorry I don’t understand your question.

flo's avatar

@Carinaponcho what can I say.

Paradox25's avatar

Unfortunately the ‘true’ statements that you’re looking for here will of course be other people’s opinions. After reading about what many people do/did while on bath salts, meth or heroin I’m convinced that most drugs should remain illegal. I’m still not sure why marijuana or shrooms are illegal, though I suspect that the war on drugs corporation would lose a good deal of money with the decriminalization or legalization of these substances.

Personally though I don’t think highly of anybody who partakes in any type of vice (chemical or not) who would criticize another for enjoying their vice/s. Drugs are not the only vice that costs taxpayers money when people fuck up.

flo's avatar

@Paradox25 If someone asks me why I’m drinking and driving, what if I said: “Drinking and driving is not thing that costs taxpayers money when people fuck up.”?

“Personally though I don’t think highly of anybody who partakes in any type of vice (chemical or not) who would criticize another for enjoying their vice/s” ???

Paradox25's avatar

@flo I don’t understand your response, since I was condemning people who have their own vices but yet criticise others for their vices without looking in the mirror at their own self-righteousness. By the way I’ve lost my brother to a drunk driver so don’t give me your BS.

flo's avatar

”...criticise others for their vices without looking in the mirror at their own self-righteousness”
So, everyone who criticises has a vice similar or equal to drugs? Mmmm no.
Also people who are into drugs can criticize the other viced people too, there is no need to end freedom of speech is there?

Re. The point is the fact that there are other things that cost taxpayers, is neither here or there. It doesn’t mitigate the seriousness of the problem.

Paradox25's avatar

@flo Come on, seriously, most people who don’t want to legalize a substance like marijuana would not want any laws criminalizing alcohol, sexual promiscuity, gambling, etc but yet these vices are at least as bad as drugs with the problems that they can (and frequently do) cause. There is a problem with this type of thinking though, one side goes to jail, gets fined and frequently have their lives ruined just for weed, but let me guess the other vices are human nature so we’ll just leave them alone? My tax monies pay for these other fuckups as well, and they have adverse effects on our society as a whole.

I don’t understand when you say The point is the fact that there are other things that cost taxpayers, is neither here or there. It doesn’t mitigate the seriousness of the problem. My whole point isn’t to deny the seriousness of the problems associated with drugs, but what good are we doing as a civilized society by either refusing to ackowledge or just downplaying many problems that lead to eventual drug use, but yet continuing to condemn drug use? I also notice that many of the antidrug crowd (not claiming you personally) tends to downplay issues like bullying, harrassment, alcohol, economics, racism, etc.

There is also growing evidence that these other issues that many in the antidrug crowd tend to downplay have not only a much bigger impact on fucking up people’s lives than we could had ever imagined, but lead to eventual drug use. Obviously this obsession with the war on drugs while downplaying the roles of other problems have not worked. You’re talking about me not acknowledging the seriousness of the problems associated with illegal drugs, but since when is being self-righteous because my vice isn’t as bad as your vice a virtue?

flo's avatar

@Paradox25 “alcohol, sexual promiscuity, gambling, bullying, harrassment, alcohol, economics, racism, etc.” All these things you mentioned are downplayed by most people who are against drugs? Let’s go with that for second just for the sake of arguement, does that mean that I should downplay the death and destruction caused by the drug trade? No, of course not.

flo's avatar

By the way, ”Enjoy their vice/s” Wow.

rojo's avatar

@flo What is the big deal. I enjoy my vices and there are several others that I would enjoy if I could. That is why they are vices.

flo's avatar

What if I enjoy driving way over the speed limit anytime anywhere, and you happen to have a loved one die as a result of what I enjoy ?”

rojo's avatar

OK, valid point.

Now, turn it around. What if you were told you were not allowed to drive because there was a possiblity that you would drive over the posted speed limit and kill someone. Would that be right?

flo's avatar

That wouldn’t make any sense and the analogy doesn’t apply of course.

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rojo's avatar

Yes, it does make sense and it does apply. In fact, it is very appropriate considering the number of people killed in automobile accidents each year.
Driving fast can be considered a vice, one you evidently enjoy, but because there is the “possiblility” that you, or someone else, MIGHT not be responsible at all times or could cause themselves or others harm, we as a society say that driving cars is not allowed. What part of this does not make sense?
What if we then extend the analogy and say that, while cars are not allowed, motorcycles (or cigarettes) are as are trucks (alcohol) as long as we can profit from taxing their use. What if we say you can drive a Chevy Malibu if a doctor says you can have it? Does this make more sense?
Probably not, just like our drug laws.

flo's avatar

@rojo Is this an actual debate, or is one side making the other side seem to have a fraction of a legitimate point just by participating in it?

flo's avatar

BTW, oneof my posts above, What if I “enjoy Key word if. .

mattbrowne's avatar

Because misuse can seriously harm other people. Everybody has a right to abuse his or her own body, but that’s it. Some drugs can be used in a responsible manner such as alcohol or cannabis, but that’s not possible for stuff like meth or crack. I would make misuse of alcohol illegal as well, for example by creating a law saying that alcohol blood content of more than 0.15% outside your own home is illegal. Something similar for cannabis.

rojo's avatar

@flo It’s ok, I do not mind that you totally blew off my opinion and examples as irrelevant because you do not agree with them. You come off as a little pissy but hey, we’re all friends here.
Incidently, if the key work in your question was “if”, why did you emphasize the word “enjoy”?

muhammajelly's avatar

@mattbrowne Why can’t meth be used responsibly? Doctors prescribe Desoxyn. Are the patients all irresponsible or in fact are they doing the responsible thing under the circumstances? What about military use of meth and friends during extended duration missions in which heightened alertness is needed even after many hours? Meth can be used responsibly and is every day. I would question why anyone would choose crack over cocaine but everyone who drank Coke in the past surely wasn’t irresponsible. Doctors also used cocaine as an anesthetic. Saturday Night Live used cocaine to entertain America and the only people who got hurt did so laughing.

El_Cadejo's avatar

Personally I think Meth is a horrible drug but that’s not to say there aren’t people who can’t use it responsibly. Paul Erdos used meth responsibly IMO. “Erdős was one of the most prolific publishers of papers in mathematical history…”

“In 1979 a colleague bet him $500 that he couldn’t stop taking the drug for a full month. He won the bet, but concluded by saying, “You’ve showed me I’m not an addict. But I didn’t get any work done. I’d get up in the morning and stare at a blank piece of paper. I’d have no ideas, just like an ordinary person. You’ve set mathematics back a month.” He then immediately started taking amphetamines again, presumably until his death at the age of 83.”

muhammajelly's avatar

@uberbatman @mattbrowne I owe my success in part to an amphetamine-and-stimulant-cocktail I take when I do serious work one component of which is meth. Sometimes I work on products for which time-to-market is crucial and if I couldn’t work a 500-hour month I would simply miss the boat. For instance during such periods I need to hire SIX people if I want to be sure one is always there to hand-me-reach-me-fetch-me.

rojo's avatar

Growing up in the early 70’s most of my friends were happy with pot. Sure, there was experimentation with other drugs like LSD and mushrooms but mainly it was pot and pot was what you came back to. You would smoke a joint, pass it around between you and then smoke another one because it felt good and it took more than a couple of hits to get off.
Then, bam! crackdown time. Pot got harder to get. More busts, penalties were stiffened in an attempt to stem the flow yet still some came through. As a response to the crackdown, new strains were bred, bringing the THC levels up so you could get high with less drug. Smaller quantities were easier to smuggle. Still, there was less out there for you to buy so folks turned to other drugs like pills or coke and heroin which gave you more bang for the buck and didn’t require semi-trucks to smuggle in.
More crackdowns, less product coming into the country.
Again, innovation kicks in to make more with less (crack) or to produce soemthing domestically such as is the case with meth.
And in all this the suppliers got richer and richer and the friend you used to buy a baggie from out of his backpack (and who bought from you when he was short) became the dealer drove up in his new Mercedes and sold stuff out of his trunk that was supplied by the druglord with the intenational connections.

You know, I can’t help but wonder if we had been left alone with our $10.00 lids and our joints that took a whole one to get you high whether we would be in the situation we are in now?

flo's avatar

A person driving a car after using pot is impaired enough to cause an accident, the reaction time is slowed. There must be workplace accidents etc. that would be traced to cannabis use for example. So there is no such thing as harmless/victimless drugs. Don’t touch any stuff, there is no con side that.

@rojo Enjoy is emphasised because enjoying is cause of the problem.
Death and destruction caused by the drug trade, as I stated above.

rojo's avatar

Yes, you are correct. There are accidents caused by drug use BUT there are accidents caused by carelessness and by stupidity or for that matter inattentiveness. These causes have nothing to do with drug use so how do you tie drug use into them? Drugs are not the evil that you say they are. They can result in bad things but so can religion but I do not hear you calling for the end of the church.

On your other point, I think you are mistaken. Enjoyment does not cause the problem. Irresponsibility does and that occurs both with and without drug usage. And that still does not answer why you think IF is the operative word in your sentence. IF we based all of our laws on IF we could pretty much eliminate any kind of human involvement. We might just as well live in plastic bubbles that isolated us both from reality and from each other.

Death and destruction are also caused by greed and capitalism. Should we put an end to them also? I think you are living in, or wish you were living in,an overly simplistic world. It is a lot more complicated than you are willing to concede.

mattbrowne's avatar

You’re making a good point, @muhammajelly. I recently learned that 93% of all people who drink alcohol never become alcoholics. I wonder about the percentage of meth users but haven’t found any material. My guess is that less than 10% never become meth addicts. Perhaps even less than 5%. Worse for crack users. Heroin users?

muhammajelly's avatar

@mattbrowne “addicts” means what? Physical addiction? People who use stimulants will all become physically addicted in a short period of time but that isn’t a problem. For instance if you drink a cup of coffee each morning you are an addict because 200 mg of caffeine per day will cause withdrawal symptoms. The problem is that “addicts” implies something different than addiction in the medical sense. Lots of people use stimulants and don’t go around stealing car stereos. If caffeine was illegal we would be seeing people steal for it but it isn’t because it is inherently bad stuff; it is because people steal for money and then buy whatever they want. For me I use more and more and then stop abruptly at the end of a project. If you don’t stop and start it isn’t useful since the rate of increase is more important than the dose. If they want to teach something in school to prevent problems it should be that you need to pick a stop point to “reset” so that you get all the benefits without ever reaching mega-doses.

flo's avatar

@rojo
”...there are accidents caused by carelessness and by stupidity or for that matter inattentiveness”

When you add drug use into the equation that involves irresponsiblity of stupidity, that must lessen the number of accidents then.

“And that still does not answer why you think IF is the operative word in your sentence.”

I’m a speeder and/or a drug dealer trying to make a convert/customer out of you.

It is a lot more complicated than you are willing to concede.
The two time drug dealers
the criminal organizatins,
the addicts who are in denial
are among the ones who make it complicated of and/or make it seem to be too complicated to even try to tackle the problem. (......Edited out)
Why are you participating in the death and destruction by using and/or selling drugs @flo?

Because there is death and destruction caused by religion, capitalism, people who cause accidents because of their are carelessness, stupidity inattentiveness ... I have to add to whatever other problems out there is already don’t I?

mattbrowne's avatar

@muhammajelly – Loss of control defines addiction.

Paradox25's avatar

@flo I understand what you’re saying that drugs being dangerous should not be downplayed because of other problems, but again I find there are problems with this way of thinking for the two following reasons.

1. Alcohol is the most dangerous drug on the planet, so would you support banning that substance? Most antidrug people answer this question with a no.

2. Drugs being illegal causes increased efforts to be taken enforcing laws and spouting propaganda against them, which in turn means that many of the underlying factors which causes people to use drugs to begin with tend to be downplayed. Some of these factors are cultural expectations, peer pressure, bullying/harrassment, family, economical reasons, etc, etc, etc.

Don’t you think that concentrating on enforcing drug laws takes priority away from focusing on deeper underlying issues which not only cause great harm to our society, but probably play a major role in contributing to the drug problem?

flo's avatar

@Paradox25 I can’t add to what I have posted already whether my point is about illegal or legal. permalink

muhammajelly's avatar

@mattbrowne Based on defining addiction as “loss of control” I think I am going to have to tell you I think your numbers on percent of people who truly lose control is far higher than in reality based on my personal knowledge of a large sampling (hundreds?) of drug users. You probably want me to link to a study instead but I have never seen a study of people who didn’t cause problems with their drug use. Vast numbers of drug users are not listed anywhere as drug users. Lance Armstrong didn’t want his drug use known any more than anyone else does. I doubt Mr Armstrong thinks his drug use was bad but society will punish him for it.

Having said that I need to point out the gray nature of control. Every KM/hour faster you drive your car decreases your control and increases automobile deaths. People driving 100 KM/hour have lost control of their car because at 10 KM/hour they have more control. Driving 100 KM/hour vs 10 KM/hour kills 10’s of 1000’s of people per year. I have taken your “loss of control” instead to mean “loss of control over your level of control.” If I am wrong in this assumption and you really intend to say less control is loss of control please correct me because I do not intend to misconstrue your statement.

mattbrowne's avatar

@muhammajelly – The 7% alcohol addicts out of 100% alcohol consumers was a quote from a German researcher participating in a talkshow I recently watched. I tried Google to verify this and found this:

http://www.alcoholaddiction.info/alcoholism-statistics.htm

“A majority of society is able to drink alcohol responsibly. They will consume alcohol in social situations and continue on with their day to day life with their alcohol use causing damage to themselves or those around them. On the other hand, some people are not able to stop or control their alcohol use. For these individuals, what was once a social experience becomes a way of life. Recent data from the National Institutes of Health reports that 15% of the people living in the United States are considered “problem drinkers.” Of this 15%, 5%-10% of the males and 3%-5% of the females could be labeled as alcoholics.”

flo's avatar

@mattbrowne Your assertion serves the people who make their wealth from driving people into alcoholism. The data/study (studies like that are ususally funded by who) is not necessarily accurate.

muhammajelly's avatar

@mattbrowne I really don’t know if you can accurately measure these things because there is a reality-distortion-field created by the justice department. Take for instance “Ex-Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, ordered to report to US prison Feb. 16, seeks to enter a prison substance abuse program. It can shave a year off his time behind bars, but does he really have an abuse problem?” In this example a man without an alcohol problem claims he does because Alcoholics in the USA are given 1 year shorter sentence. I know we have to make decisions based on some sort of numbers… it is just too bad accurate ones are so hard to come by. A criminal justice system which give alcoholics years off is bound to create a lot of alcoholics which otherwise wouldn’t exist in our statistics.

mattbrowne's avatar

@flo – This isn’t my assertion. I was simply quoting statistics. People are not driven into alcoholism by statistics. Root causes are bad parenting, lack of basic life skills, and exhaustion of willpower (having too much too decide per day for example).

muhammajelly's avatar

@mattbrowne Would you become an alcoholic in a statistic if it meant a year less prison time?

mattbrowne's avatar

@muhammajelly – I’m sure the margin of error isn’t small, but I don’t expect it to be huge either. Alcohol is dangerous when people can’t handle it.

mattbrowne's avatar

@muhammajelly – I also got the 93% and 7% from a German researcher about the German situation. The criminal justice and prison system is quite different here.

muhammajelly's avatar

@mattbrowne I agree some people have problems, too many in fact! However I just feel many of these people are in search of a problem one way or another and if it wasn’t Alcohol it would be betting at the track. If it wasn’t betting at the track it would be a gang. If it wasn’t a gang it would be something else and so on. You cannot remove all possible problems for these people creating the perfect nerf-world in which they are safe. To make me believe Alcohol was a major cause of misery you would need to first change my mind that these were people in want of a problem.

flo's avatar

“I can’t live without any alcohol” = being addicted
“I can live without any alcohol” = not being an addict.
All these excuses (looking at other things to blame) are just excuses.

flo's avatar

@mattbrowne Re. …93% of all people who drink alcohol never become alcoholics. The same statistics are read differently by different people.
“Only 7%” to the addicted, to the manufacturers et al.
“7% too many”, to people who are working against alcoholism.

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