The war on drugs in the United States has been a long battle, especially in states surrounding the Mexican border. Now, the state of Arizona’s Governor, Doug Ducey, is asking for federal funding and resources to help combat the drug and human trafficking problem of the state. The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona supports a public health approach, including investment in drug treatment, education, and regulation of drug availability. They have an overall goal of ending drug policies that cause the widespread violation of constitutional and human rights. This is a good goal to have, considering the large number of individuals in the state who struggle with substance abuse or dependence. Governor Ducey wants those responsible for drugs entering the state to be taken down.
Political history of the war on drugs
Many drugs that are currently illegal in the United States, such as marijuana, opium, coca, and psychedelics have long been used for medical and spiritual purposes. What about drugs that are the most harmful and do not offer any medical benefits? There is an epidemic of heroin and meth in the United States. Several politicians have claimed they have used marijuana in their younger years, and even favor legalization of the drug. Throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s. These types of drugs were seen as a way for youth to rebel. This why President Nixon declared a War on Drugs. Over the past 40 and 50 years, we have seen the effects of drugs on the nation, but it is important to focus on drugs like heroin, which are being sent across the Mexican border, to be sold to teenagers, who end up dying from drug use.
Governor Ducey speaks out
Ducey spoke out and testified on Monday, November 23rd, at a U.S. Senate homeland security meeting. The meeting took place in Phoenix, Arizona which known as the gateway location for Mexican drug cartels. His focus was on the growing heroin problem, and stated that more funding and assets are needed for the state. This means more planes, helicopters, radio equipment, troopers, analysts, pilots, and others who might be able to track down the criminals in order to punish them. In doing this, Ducey said he is not only helping his state, but helping other states from gaining more access to drugs that are being sent over. Ducey went on to say that Arizona is the front door to the national drug trafficking epidemic because the state shares about 370 miles of a border with Mexico.
Ducey’s federal support plan
Governor Ducey created the Arizona Border Strike Force Bureau in 2015. Since just September, the Strike Force has helped to seize more than $2.2 million in firearms, about 4,000 pounds of marijuana, 73 pounds of meth, and 19 pounds of heroin. This was more than the entire amount seized in 2014. It is all about money, and Ducey says that he will propose more spending next year, as he continues working on a budget for the war on drugs.
You can watch a video of Ducey speaking out at the meeting, and more on his ideas for the war on drugs by clicking here.