Drug prohibition has failed. Drug usage rates have not declined, and illegal drugs are more available—and cheaper—than ever before. At the same time, the costs of the drug war are staggering. More than $1 trillion taxpayer dollars have been spent. More than 50,000 SWAT raids occur each year. Hundreds of thousands of non-violent drug offenders are wasting their lives away in prison at our expense. And more than 60,000 people have been murdered in Mexico over the past six years.
America’s Longest War provides a brief history of drug prohibition, beginning with Nixon’s declaration of war in 1971 and ending with Obama’s broken promise to allow states to determine their own medical marijuana policies. It chronicles how, over the past 40 years, the drug war has escalated from a small domestic program mostly focused on treatment to the multi-billion dollar international war it is today.
There are many victims of the drug war, and America’s Longest War tells some of their stories.