Drugs play an important part in the social make-up of society. They can be beneficial to destructive, depending on their use. Recreational drugs affect society in many ways, from increased crime to abusing the trauma centers that could be used more for real emergencies. Each year thousands of people are sent to ERs because of someone using drugs, from the user, to the innocent.
The effects of drugs in society can be numerous in that they can affect so many things at once, or cause a chain reaction of effects. The US BJS (Bureau of Justice Statistics) over half of State inmates and three-quarters of Federal inmates are drug users. Arrested for robbery to domestic abuse, from armed robbery to murder, and from using to selling drugs, more crime is committed by drug users than most other reasons. In no way is drug use a victimless crime.
Cost of drug on society is staggering in the dollars spent in jails, hospitals, lost property, and other measures. The US Government reported that in 2002 $180.9 billion dollars was the amount drugs affected the US Economy. What that figure means is it affected in every aspect of American life. When it is figured on a global scale, by adding all the billions it affects every Country, the amount would be astronomical.
With the Colorado pot laws, in effect and thought to help with problems there. It is just the opposite; Emergency Rooms are seeing an increase of adults and children because of the legal sales. In five months the amount of people pulled over for driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol is not 12.5%. Granted it will take a few years to get exact numbers, but it is already off to a bad start.
How does this affects social deviance? Understanding that social norms vary from one culture to another, there are still common truths that flow through all of them. Any action that disrupts a social norm is called a deviant behavior. So when a substance abuse increases crime and disrupts the very fabric of the culture, then it must be labeled as a social deviant behavior. Drug abuse does just that, it affects the fabric of the society at every point. It degrades and ruptures everything that holds the society together. It has moved to such a point, the some form of social control warranted. The society itself is needed to act.
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