Behind the War on Drugs

According to Eugine Jarecki (2015), the war on drugs has not been properly fought. He believes that the government has ended up aggravating the problem when it was expected to be solving the problem. His film, The House I Live in, exposes issues that have led to the prevalence in cases of drug trafficking and abuse. Basically, he believes the main cause of the problem is economic disenfranchisement, which he believes is caused by the drug fighters (Jarecki, 2015). He strongly criticizes the locking up of people caught trading in drugs and forgetting to address the real causes of their involvement in the drug business (Jarecki, 2015). He argues that locking them up only leads to congestion in jails, and inmates leave the jails not having gone through any form of correction. This work gives my feelings, thoughts, experiences and learned concepts from the film in relation to the public policy and the role of nursing.

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I strongly believe Jarecki has a very strong point when he says America has not been addressing the real cause of the prevalence in drug abuse. I learned from him that America has jailed approximately 45 million people for trading in drugs over the years, and I agree with him that there must be a reason for the need for some Americans to self-medicate (Jarecki, 2015). I also believe that the government should not be very tough on drug users before addressing the cause of their involvement in drug abuse. The main cause of the involvement of youths in drugs is poverty (Jarecki, 2015). I have observed, just as Jarecki did, that many drug dealers are black Americans and Americans of the Latino origin. These groups of Americans live in regions that lack good facilities and care. As a result, they get into drug trafficking for the sake of earning a living. Therefore, the government should create jobs, and ensure equal distribution of resources. This will ensure that youths have something to help them earn a living without having to be involved in drug selling.

Secondly, the government should invest more in providing medical facilities and care for drug victims rather than piling them in jails. I believe more can be achieved if authorities realize that counseling the victims and providing affordable medication to them can achieve more than putting them away in jails. As Jarecki argues, there is a reason why the victims decide to self-medicate (Jarecki, 2015). This could be addressed through providing medication at rates that every citizen can afford to prevent self-medication. The government has done little in ensuring that populations that live in ghettos have access to good medical services. In addition, counseling the victims is more likely to bring about better corrective results compared to jails. It can help find out the real deprivations that cause the involvement of people in the drug business. This view relates the role of nurses as givers of care to underprivileged populations.

In conclusion, I agree with Jarecki that leaders in the fight against drugs should be more humane in dealing with the people involved in selling, buying and using drugs. This is the only way they will find out and address the real causes of the prevalence in drug abuse. Otherwise, locking them up in jails will not help because there are no good correctional measures in jails and inmates always come back to continue with their businesses. Worse still, their economic problems are aggravated, making them come back as stronger dealers than they were. Therefore, they should be counseled and helped to overcome their economic problems just as the nurse takes care of his/her patients.


Trisapdo, K. (2015, Feb 7). The house I live in (video file). Web.

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