CRIME and DRUGS
Drug Use Does Not Cause Crime -- Prohibition Does
Various government agencies have been deeply concerned about the relationship of drugs and violence. After extensive study, they have shown that drug-related crime is a common misnomer. The proper phrase is prohibition-related crime.
The Panel on the Understanding and Control of Violent Behavior was established by the National Academy of Sciences in 1988 in response to a request made by three Federal agencies: the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In 1994 it concluded:
"Alcohol is the only psychoactive drug that in many individuals tends to increase aggressive behavior temporarily while it is taking effect."
"Marijuana and opiates [heroin] temporarily inhibit violent behavior. There is no evidence to support the claim that snorting or injecting cocaine stimulates violent behavior. In the case of alcohol, hazards tend to be related to use, while for illegal psychoactive drugs they tend to be related to distribution and purchase.
"Alcohol drinking and violence are linked through pharmacological effects on behavior. Illegal drugs and violence are linked primarily through drug marketing: disputes among rival distributors, arguments and robberies involving buyers and sellers, property crimes committed to raise drug money and, more speculatively, social and economic interactions between the illegal markets and the surrounding communities."
In 1998, "Drug Czar" McCaffrey announced that a study by CASA of criminals under the influence of drugs at the time of the commission of their crime showed that 25% were under the influence of only one drug. When only one drug was involved, the drug was: alcohol, 84% -- cocaine, 12% -- heroin, 4% -- sole use of marijuana was too infrequent for inclusion.