Decriminalization of Recreational Drugs

Essay by ahasaUniversity, Bachelor's November 2014

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Armanda Hasa October 21st, 2014

212820866 AP/PHIL 2075 3.00 Graeme Taylor


In the United States of America the distribution, use and making of recreational drugs such as marijuana, heroin, and cocaine has been criminalized. Any person that takes part in distributing, using, and making of these drugs have been exposed to incarceration. People that engage in drug use should not be exposed to punishment. If there are complexities in dealing with the addiction of drug use, it should be left in approach of the medical and psychiatric fields, not criminal law. In this essay, I will argue that we should decriminalize the use of recreational drugs. It has been suggested that some drugs aid relaxation, increase potential energy and even increase artistic creativity, which leads to drugs users being productive. In order to defend my position I will aim to prove that the decriminalization of recreational drugs is not necessarily an argument for legalization of drugs but merely rejecting the idea that the production, the sale and use of recreational drugs is a criminal offence.


In defense of my position, I will be using Douglas Husak as a source to help justify my arguments about why we should decriminalize the use of recreational drugs. In the article "Why We Should Decriminalize Drug Use", Douglas Husak questions the idea of why the law punishes people who use drugs such as marijuana, heroin and cocaine. He argues that imprisonment for drug use is a cruel punishment when it is mostly harmless to others. Husak begins to support his philosophical argument by bringing up the issue that punishing people for drug use should demand justification. Since incarceration is dangerously described, the state has an obligation to

give reasons in order to justify this take of action. However, in his article Husak...