We officially lost the “war on drugs” in 2001. You can’t blame September 11, even though many Americans would love to. The true culprit was meth. I said it! I have made a bold statement. I plan on supporting my stance with facts.
America’s drug craze became popular culture in the 1950s. Only a tiny segment of the population were known users. But, with each passing decade that tiny segment grew. Out of 1960s, the counterculture embraced illegal drug use. Psychedelics, pharmecuticals and imported drugs popped up all over this country. They were the badge meant for social change or anti-establishment. After the Civil Rights and Vietnam period ended, drug use erupted into mainstream America. Countries began to see the millions to billions exporting their product here. U.S. Customs was lax in their enforcement of keeping cocaine, heroin, marijuana and opium from our shores. South American countries such as Colombia and Peru shipped tons of processed cocaine to big-city markets like New York, Los Angeles and Miami. Along with the trafficking came the street-level distribution.
Enter the CIA and FBI.
The Federal government was terrified of a repeat of the mid-late sixties “long, hot summers” and campus protests. A combined, intelligence operation COINTERPLO was created to allow drug markets to flourish within inner-city (black) neighborhoods. If a young, black male was doped up, he couldn’t throw molotov cocktails in the street. This example of willful blindness led to the crack wars exploding in 1982. For the first time, America was exposed to the indiscriminate violence associated with rampant, drug trafficking.
From the mid-1980s and 1990s, drug use creeped its way to the America’s elite class. Designer drugs like estascy or X were made glamorous by the movie “Studio 54”. The film reflected the star-like lifestyle of partygoers in a popular, New York nightclub. Later on, Hollywood celebrated drugs’ glamour and glitz with “Blow”. Selma Hayek and Johnny Depp flashed all over the big screen spending millions on hot cars, lavish mansions and fancy dinners; all bought and paid with Colombian blood money. Then, everything changed after 9/11.
The war on drugs lost to the war on terror. Homeland Security took its liberties and greased their pockets with funding meant for rehabilitation, education and law enforcment. Drug addiction is at an all-time high; with a new powerful player reshaping the game.
In the Midwest, meth, ice, speed, or crystal has blazed a trail of violence and ruin. Spreading like a disease outbreak, every corner of America has suffered from the brutality of this evil beast. Meth is the only drug that can be created through over the counter products and a fifth grade, chemistry book. A man with no job and little cash can be a kingpin in weeks, if not days. While people want to believe blacks and Latinos create crack and heroin(which they don’t); few can deny white people created, packaged and distributed meth all over the nation. Most of its users are white. Most of the pushers are white. Law enforcement is stonewalled because there too many addicts and dealers to arrest.
The war on drugs was originally designed to keep blacks in line. That scheme backfired thanks to America’s need to be excessive. It has been twenty-five years since crack first arrived. It’s showing no signs of leaving soon. Meth has tore a bigger hole in American society in a shorter amount of time. Safe to say, its future will be more violent and destructive than its vile predecessor.