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RACE AND THE DRUG WAR 

The drug war has produced the most viciously racist outcomes of any policy since Reconstruction and perhaps since slavery itself. [1] In many areas, Latinos suffer as much as African Americans. 

Drug use is an overwhelmingly white practice. [2] Drug war punishment is an overwhelmingly black experience. [3a] 

More often than not, white people do the crime but black and brown people do the time. [3b] 

[3c] " It is clear that use prevalence rates do not vary substantially among racial and ethnic groups" 

- White House [ONDCP] ordered 2001 report from the National Research Council, Informing America's Policy on Illegal Drugs: What We Don't Know Keeps Hurting Us

 


[3d] "The research shows, conclusively, that drug addiction reaches across all strata of society with affluent, educated Caucasians being the most likely drug users, and the most likely to be addicted." 

- Lonnie Bristow, M.D., Past President of the AMA, re: study by Physician Leadership on National Drug Policy http://center.butler.brown.edu/plndp/


This subject is a clear example of how both media presentations, and the human inclination to filter out dissonant information, can produce grossly distorted perceptions of reality. 

Many attempt to excuse racial profiling as simply reflecting that police patrol more heavily in minority populated areas. The facts often show that makes no difference at all. [4] 

If profiling were justified by the likelihood that minorities are more likely to be guilty, the results would show that; they don't. [5] 

The drug war is a policy that seems to be attempting to answer this question: 

"How many black people do you have to put in prison to stop white people from using drugs ? " 

For more information : 

Race And The Drug War

 www.drugpolicy.org/race/ 

Race, HIV and the Drug War 

www.drugwarfacts.org/racehiv.htm 

Race, Prison and the Drug Laws 

www.drugwarfacts.org/racepris.htm 

Racial Issues 

www.mapinc.org/racial.htm

 www.sentencingproject.org 

Books: 

THE NEW JIM CROW  by Michelle Alexander

Race to Incarcerate by Mark Mauer 

No Equal Justice by David Cole and John Lamberth 

Chaos or Community by Holly Sklar

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