Using drugs leads to crime

Write the following essay on Critically assess the view that using drugs leads to crime. The essay is to be 8 pages with three to five sources, with in-text citations and a reference page. These situations illustrate an obvious association between drugs and crime. However, it is difficult to accurately determine to what extent in which drugs could be considered the main motivation for crimes. A person under the influence of an illegal drug while committing a crime does not necessarily mean that the crime was drug-related. To what extent the drug clouded their judgment is subjective at best. That person may be a cigarette smoker as well but the crime would certainly not be classified as tobacco-related. Theories such as Strain, Labeling and Socialization explain causations for crime and can also be applied to drug usage, but all drug users do not commit crimes and all criminals do not use drugs.

The connections between drug use and crime are complex and explanations vary widely. This has been a topic that has garnered a considerable amount of attention for the past few decades among the public, media and politicians because of the considerable negative social and economic impact on society as a whole and the victims of crime. Some argue that laws make criminals out of drug users and distributors. Prohibition acts to encourage organized criminal activity because of the high profitability involved. In addition, the inflated expense of drugs is the main reason a user has to resort to crime to support their habit. Broadly differing arguments are offered regarding the degree to which criminal activity is driven by drug use. The term ‘drug user’ cannot be used without qualification when connecting this activity to crimes of any description. Drugs such as amphetamines, cocaine, phencyclidine, (PCP), barbiturates and alcohol are more closely connected to criminal acts of violence than are heroin and marijuana according to current scientific literature (Wright & Klee, 2001). Some statistics that show a linkage from drug use to crime are generated from drug tests on prisoners.

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