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Drug Prohibition

I Turned Down 3 Years in Prison and Ended Up With 15 to Life

Anthony Papa | Posted 02.05.2014 | Crime
Anthony Papa

People's fear of angering prosecutors by going to trial is real. Defendants who choose to exercise their constitutional rights to go to trial routinely face sentences three times greater than the original plea deals.

80 Years Ago Today We Repealed Alcohol Prohibition, Now It's Time to End Drug Prohibition

Derek Rosenfeld | Posted 02.04.2014 | Politics
Derek Rosenfeld

Making alcohol illegal led to huge increases in organized crime, corruption, and violence. For many of the reasons that led to its repeal, the same arguments can be made for why we need to end the war on drugs.

WATCH: Proof The War On Drugs Will Fail | Posted 01.24.2014 | Politics

Doesn't alcohol prohibition sound more like the plot of an "I Love Lucy" episode than an actual thing our government thought would work?...

Leading Magazines From the Right and Left Come Together on Marijuana Legalization

Chris Soda | Posted 01.23.2014 | Politics
Chris Soda

One area of policy which appears to have transmuted the pronounced polarization in this country has been marijuana.

Stop Searching People's A**holes for Drugs

Anthony Papa | Posted 01.23.2014 | Crime
Anthony Papa

The war on drugs is out of control. How do we know this? Look no further than the disturbing story that just broke about a New Mexican resident whose routine traffic stop turned into a 14-hour living nightmare.

Time to Break the Taboo on the World's Longest Running War

Sam Branson | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Sam Branson

One war the world overlooks that is still happening today is the so-called "War on Drugs," which was famously declared by former President Richard Nixon more than 40 years ago. It's a war -- like many -- that doesn't need to be happening, and it's a war, like many, that is costing way too much money and too many innocent lives along the way.

9 Disgusting Drugs That Prove Prohibition Will Never Work

The Huffington Post | Andy McDonald & Nick Wing | Posted 10.28.2013 | Politics

Since its earliest stages, the war on drugs has followed the policy of prohibition as its misguiding light. Drug warriors, many driven by the belief t...

Why The War On Drugs Is Doomed

Reason | Posted 10.08.2013 | Politics

One indisputable achievement of the U.S. war in Afghanistan, which overthrew a regime that alternately cracked down on opium production and profited f...

Smoke A Joint, Lose Your Kids

Radley Balko | Posted 10.04.2013 | Politics

You'd think that in the age of medical pot, legal pot in Colorado and Washington, and a majority of Americans in favor of legalizing the drug, we'd at...

Marijuana, Sex and Amsterdam

Jeffrey A. Miron | Posted 11.05.2013 | Politics
Jeffrey A. Miron

For the past twenty years, I have researched the economics of drug legalization versus drug prohibition. Based on this work and much other evidence, I have come to regard legalization as a policy no-brainer. Virtually all the effects would be positive, with minimal risks of significant negatives.

What Breaking Bad Reveals About The War On Drugs

Radley Balko | Posted 08.06.2013 | Politics

Sure, Breaking Bad is fiction. But the real drug war can often be darker, more twisted, more corrupting, and more violent than the show. Still, while ...

Meet The Man Leading The Charge Against Drug Prohibition

Rolling Stone | Posted 08.06.2013 | Politics

The most influential man in the battle for legalization is a wonky intellectual in dad jeans....

Drug Cop Goes Undercover in High School and Arrests Autistic Student

Anthony Papa | Posted 07.24.2013 | Crime
Anthony Papa

The war on drugs has created convenient vehicles for looking tough on crime while hiding being the shield of public safety. But that shield gets worn down when our basic rights are curtailed through its use.

Drug Warriors and Gun Violence: The War on Drugs Fuels Violence

James Peron | Posted 07.19.2013 | Politics
James Peron

As bad as drugs can be, Drug Warriors are worse. They raise the stakes of the drug fight, incentivize the drug gangs and push them to greater heights of violence. When a solution becomes worse than the problem it is time to abolish the solution.

40th Anniversary of the Rockefeller Drug Laws: A Window of Opportunity For a Better Path

Anthony Papa | Posted 07.07.2013 | New York
Anthony Papa

In 1973, two years after President Nixon declared a "war on drugs," New York Governor Rockefeller passed the toughest drug laws in the nation, demanding mandatory sentences for drug law violations, while removing the judge's power to consider each case individually.

Radley Balko

13 People Who Are Dead Because Of America's Futile War On Drugs | Radley Balko | Posted 04.20.2013 | Politics

America's long drug war has produced countless tragedies, ruined lives and led to parentless children, as well as the deaths of drug warriors, nonviol...

Matt Sledge

Is The War On Drugs Nearing An End? | Matt Sledge | Posted 04.08.2013 | Politics

NEW YORK -- For four decades, libertarians, civil rights activists and drug treatment experts have stood outside of the political mainstream in arguin...

Shafer Commission Report on Marijuana and Drugs, Issued 40 Years Ago Today, Was Ahead of its Time

Eric E. Sterling | Posted 05.21.2013 | Politics
Eric E. Sterling

Given forty years of escalation of the war on drugs in the U.S. and around the world, the global consensus that the policy is a deadly and costly failure, and that policies that hurt our fragile economies must be fixed, we need a new Shafer Commission to develop and recommend a drug policy that saves lives.

Raid Of The Day: Stephen Shively And Officer Tony Patterson

Radley Balko | Posted 05.04.2013 | Politics

October 12, 1995: At around 3 am, college student Stephen Shively woke up to the sound of police battering down the door to his apartment in Topeka, K...

Raid Of The Day: 2001 Idaho Raid Results In Three Fatalities, Four Grams Of Pot

Radley Balko | Posted 04.24.2013 | Politics

On January 3, 2001, Jerome County, Idaho sheriff's deputies James Moulson and Phillip Anderson conducted a drug raid on the Eden home of George Timoth...

Raid Of The Day: Thomas and Darren Russell

Radley Balko | Posted 04.16.2013 | Politics

In February 2009, Chicago police raided both units of a flat as part of a drug investigation. According to a lawsuit later filed by the wrongly ra...

Raid Of The Day: Sorry, Mr. Mayor (Again)

Radley Balko | Posted 04.15.2013 | Politics

In September 2005, police in Bel Aire, Kansas photographed what they thought were marijuana plants growing in a resident's backyard. They showed the p...

Raid Of The Day: John Hirko, Jr.

Radley Balko | Posted 04.02.2013 | Politics

In April 1997, a SWAT team in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania raided the home of John Hirko, Jr. after an informant claimed to have purchased drugs from him. ...

How Shameful Policies Increase America's Gun Violence

Trevor Burrus | Posted 04.01.2013 | Politics
Trevor Burrus

America's unique level of gun violence is not something to scratch our heads at as if it is a bolt from the blue -- it is partially the expected outcome of immoral and ineffective government policies.

Raid Of The Day: Andrew Leonard

Radley Balko | Posted 04.01.2013 | Politics

February 25, 2009: After taking down his door with a battering ram during a no-knock raid, police in Baltimore ransacked the home of 33-year-old Andr...