Drug Trade Combat in the United States


The US has been on the front line in combating drug trafficking. President Nixon initiated the fight in 1971. Since then, the war against drugs has been great. The intensity of the war is abridged by changing opinions and statistical evidence (Bourgois, Auyero, Bourgois, & Oxford, 2015). It is evident that drugs are harmful and their effects are severe. Drug trafficking and the existence of corruption cause crimes and destabilize growth by eating away social and human capital. Corruption and drug trade weaken the ability of the US to uphold development, confidence, and integrity in the criminal justice system by abolishing the trust of individuals in law enforcement agencies.

Success or Failure

The question regarding the success of the US efforts against drugs has diverse answers. Nonetheless, the US government has put in place various policies to end drug trafficking. It has been estimated that 45% of the US civilians have at least tried to use an illicit drug. Current endeavors to combat the drug trade have not been successful as the problem is still on the rise and its effect immense (Bourgois et al., 2015). Nonetheless, the US administrations continue to put effort into trying to combat the drug trade although they have not achieved their objectives in ending the vice.

Public Corruption

The drug trade has contributed greatly to public corruption. Having in mind that drug trafficking is illegal in the US; corruption happens in a bid to allow the dealers to carry out the business. Majorly, corruption takes place between law enforcement officers and drug dealers. Corruption regarding drugs has been evident since the war against drug trade was officially announced by President Nixon (Bunck & Fowler, 2012). Illegal drugs are normally very expensive to purchase; for that reason, drug traffickers are forced to bribe the police with a lot of money so that they get allowed to continue with their business. Moreover, if one is caught in possession of illegal drugs in the US, heavy fines or imprisonment follows. When some law enforcement officers are not honest in their work and engage in corrupt deals, they end up causing problems in the country such as failure in combating the drug trade.


The issue of the legalization of illicit drugs in the US has been contentious as different people hold diverse opinions regarding it. Those who support the debate argue that people ought to be given free will, and their personal lives must not be interfered with while the ones who oppose affirming that the lives and welfare of people will be at stake if drugs are legalized. Despite the argument, the US administration stands firm in ensuring that drug trade is not legalized (Bagley, 2013). A current survey shows that it is only 10% of all the Americans who support the legalization of drug trafficking. Presently, no state has legalized drug trade in the US. Drugs should not be legalized as the legalization would upsurge the level of casual users, addicts, crime, homicide, and violence to mention a few.

Since the legalization of drug trafficking would result in more individuals in practice, increased health complications would be evident thus lowering their economic output. Although some people argue that drug legalization would save the US a lot of money and the current war has not succeeded, the cons of illicit drug legalization are more than the pros (Bagley, 2013). In conclusion, drugs ought not to be legalized, and the US government and other stakeholders need to intensify the war against drug trade by putting in place more stringent measures and policies to combat it.


Bagley, B. (2013). The evolution of drug trafficking and organized crime in Latin America. Sociologia, Problemas e Práticas, 2(71), 99-123.

Bourgois, P., Auyero, J., Bourgois, P., & Oxford, N. S. H. (2015). Insecurity, the war on drugs, and crimes of the state: Symbolic violence in the Americas. Violence at the Urban Margins, 1(1) 305-321.

Bunck, J. M., & Fowler, M. R. (2012). Bribes, bullets, and intimidation: Drug trafficking and the law in Central America. Pennsylvania: Penn State Press.