The idea of regulation over restriction first came to me when I learned about the Prohibition. During this time in the United States, alcohol was completely illegal. It led to speakeasies and illegal alcohol being made. This idea of restricting the population from a dangerous substance that is commonly used seems like a good idea for the health of the nation, but it just puts more risk towards the people’s health. I am constantly reminded of this commonplace when I hear about deaths and arrests related to drugs.
Marijuana is a very common substance that many people use, but due to its illegality, there are millions of people with charges associated with the plant. Mass incarceration is only one of the major problems that comes with restricting commonly used substance. Health risks are also a major concern. The unlawfulness of marijuana led to the creation K2, a synthetic designer drug that is synthetic. These fake cannabinoids created a surge of health problems that actual marijuana would have never created. Another instance where the restriction of substances created health problems was with vaporizing cartridges for marijuana. Many people throughout the past few years have been consuming marijuana by vaping it. Unfortunately, people do not pay attention to what is in these cartridges and it has caused multiple health problems associated with people’s lungs. The reason for this, is due to people getting cartridges from China that have been cut with unhealthy chemicals. If marijuana were more regulated than it is right now, then these occurrences would not happen.
Another drug that is highly restricted, yet still unfortunately used is cocaine. This drug already has a lot of health risks associated with it, but with the drug being completely restricted, it makes it even more dangerous. Recently, the death of Mac Miller showed how restriction is more and more dangerous now. With the drug, fentanyl, being cut into popular substances, it makes it much more threatening. Fentanyl is a drug that is 100x more powerful than morphine and it is responsible for a multitude of deaths, including Mac Miller, whose cocaine was laced with a lethal dose of it. These deaths would be less prevalent if the government chose to regulate these common drugs, instead of letting the streets deal and cut them.
This commonplace has made me realize that the government cannot control everything, and that people will do what they want, regardless of the government.