War on Drugs

June 2011 marked the 40th anniversary of President Richard Nixon's declaration of a "war on drugs" — a war which has cost $1 trillion but produced little to no effect on the supply of or demand for drugs. The war on drugs has been a war on communities of color. The racial disparities are staggering: despite the fact that whites engage in drug offenses at a higher rate than African-Americans, African-Americans are incarcerated for drug offenses at a rate that is 10 times greater than that of whites. The ACLU is advocating for a more responsible drug policy in America. It’s time to end the unjust and unsuccessful war on drugs.

Criminalizing Drug Users Is Killing People

Criminalizing Drug Users Is Killing People

By Chloe Cockburn, Advocacy and Policy Counsel, ACLU at 5:09pm
21-year-old Alysa Ivy was surrounded by people when she died of a heroin overdose. Not one of them called 911 for help. Instead, they left her alone in a motel room, afraid they’d be arrested if they called the authorities.
The War on Drugs Tears Families Apart

The War on Drugs Tears Families Apart

By Cecillia Wang, ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project at 5:30pm

June 2011 marks the 40th anniversary of President Richard Nixon's declaration of a "war on drugs" — a war that has cost roughly a trillion dollars, has produced little to no effect on the supply of or demand for drugs in the United…

Dice Raw

We Shouldn't Arrest One More Person for Having Marijuana

By Dice Raw, Grammy Award-Nominated Singer/Songwriter at 3:16pm

I had a homie who was arrested for having an ounce of weed that was just for his personal use. He had full custody of his four children and still did 8 long months. My friend hasn't been the same since, to be quite honest, and I just can't…

Our Presidents Smoked It. Why Is It Still a Crime?

Our Presidents Smoked It. Why Is It Still a Crime?

By Lynda Garcia, Soros Fellow, Criminal Law Reform Project, ACLU at 10:50am

The cover of a recent issue of The Nation calling for marijuana legalization features President Obama with his high school buddies, known as the Choom Gang, who, allegedly, were very into smoking weed. And as The Nation points out, Obama has company—Presidents…

My 5-Year-Old's Seizures Were Finally Controlled by Medical Marijuana

My 5-Year-Old's Seizures Were Finally Controlled by Medical Marijuana

By Jennifer Welton, Zander's Mom at 8:16am

My five-year-old son Zander has had two brain surgeries. During each, doctors removed portions of his brain. The second surgery had a long recovery time because of the muscle loss that he suffered after being bedridden for weeks. It caused an infection…

How to Think About the National Security State

How to Think About the National Security State

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 11:00am

The United States has grown a gigantic national security state. According to one analyst, our overall annual security budget is now more than $1.2 trillion. And we now know that includes at least $75 billion for “intelligence.” In the wake of Edward…

The House I Live In: Documentary Goes Inside the Failed War on Drugs

The House I Live In: Documentary Goes Inside the Failed War on Drugs

By Ezekiel Edwards, Director, ACLU Criminal Law Reform Project & Rebecca McCray, ACLU Criminal Law Reform Project at 4:33pm

In 1971, Richard Nixon declared a war, couched in terms that suggested that the onslaught of attacks would target and eliminate the presence of drugs in our country. But the so-called War on Drugs, it turned out, was given a deceiving title. Nixon…

Got Urine? ACLU Sues College Over Mandatory Drug Testing

Got Urine? ACLU Sues College Over Mandatory Drug Testing

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 5:12pm

Today the ACLU filed suit in federal court to stop Linn State Technical College, a public college in Missouri, from drug testing all of their incoming students with no suspicion of wrongdoing. Six brave students have stood up to administrators…

States Must Take the Lead on Ending the War on Drugs

States Must Take the Lead on Ending the War on Drugs

By Mark Cooke, ACLU of Washington at 1:53pm

June 2011 marks the 40th anniversary of President Richard Nixon's declaration of a "war on drugs" — a war that has cost roughly a trillion dollars, has produced little to no effect on the supply of or demand for drugs in the United…

The War on Drugs and the Surveillance Society

The War on Drugs and the Surveillance Society

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 3:00pm

June 2011 marks the 40th anniversary of President Richard Nixon's declaration of a "war on drugs" — a war that has cost roughly a trillion dollars, has produced little to no effect on the supply of or demand for drugs in the United…

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