Where Would America Be Without Drugs

By Jay Goodman

          Has anyone ever thought about where our country would be today without drugs? In my last two chapters I talked a lot about how things used to be before the industry age. And explained why I thought things changed afterward. But now I want to go back in time once again and talk about something that I believe is America’s worst enemy. Drugs. Why Hollywood has glamorized drugs in music and movies, and made it look like the cool thing to do. Has anyone ever looked at the overall damage is done to the United States since the 1960’s? Drugs have affected every race, it’s affected every economic status from the poor, middle-class, to the very rich. It’s single-handedly ruining more families and lives than anything our country has ever seen. I don’t have an actual number from a survey but I did my own over the last 15 years of incarceration and I believe that 75% to 90% of all the people in prison are in here for drugs. Whether they’re in here for selling drugs, possession of drugs, or robbing and stealing to get drugs. Almost every person in prison in one form or another is in here because of drugs. That’s not just in Texas, but across the whole United States. Can everyone reading this imagine these numbers for a moment. 75% to 90% of all people incarcerated in our country are in prison because of drugs.

          If we go back to the 1960’s, once again and look at the big start of the sex drugs and rock ‘n’ roll movement you’ll see that was the beginning of the change in our country. Drugs at that moment was the start of the new cancer that no one could’ve foreseen its deadly effect on our society as a whole. What started out as a college kid smoking marijuana and protesting the war has turned into a play that is eating at the foundation of America ever cents. Nothing in the history of the United States has had more effect on our country than drugs. It has reshaped the American people generation after generation, and then the leading cause of incarceration in our country. It is also reshaped education, Work ethic, and family. There is an anything or anyone in our country that hasn’t been affected by drugs. Even people who have never done drugs in their life have either had a family member or a friend suffer because of it. Back in the late 60’s, I doubt if our country thought much of it. As I recall most just looked at the hippies as a bunch of college punks. But that will change in the 1970’s, as marijuana swept across America, it wasn’t just in big cities like before. It showed up in places no one could’ve ever imagined, like small little country town. It was no longer a drug for college kids, most teenagers had tried marijuana by the time they were in high school. And even worse, other drugs became popular in the 1970’s, like LSD, downs, and speed. Throughout the 1970’s, these drugs were used on a regular basis. A statistic I read once said by the end of the 1970’s most kids in high school had admitted to using at least marijuana, and half of those kids admitted to using other types of drugs.

          Also, a large amount of these kids were also using alcohol with drugs. Almost all of the rock groups from the 1960’s and 70’s had glamorized drugs, and had written songs about the different drugs they used.

          As I said before Hollywood also started doing movies with actors using drugs. Between the rock groups in Hollywood they made it seem like it was the cool thing to do. But because of kids using drugs there was a huge spike in teenage pregnancy. There were girls as young as 13, 14, and 15 having babies. America also seen a big spike in teenage runaways, drug overdoses, crime went through the roof. Also, high school dropout rate began to climb to record numbers. And the kids that went to school were high on drugs. A lot of the kids were starting to carry knives and guns to school. Schools in large city seen their teachers being assaulted, rates, and killed.

          By the end of the 1970’s the kids that were graduating we’re not smart enough to get into college. Yes, they graduated high school but they really only had a six or seventh grade education. A lot of teachers backfin would pass their students because the kids were blown out of their minds on drugs, and cost so much problems in the class, that the teacher would pass them to just get rid of them.

          Another thing began to happen by the end of the 1970’s, there was a big decline in the quality of work in America. Back in the 50’s, 60’s, and really before America lead the world in industry. Everyone around the world knew we had the best steel, cars, and many other products. By the 1980’s, the workers started coming to work high just like they did through high school. When in the past if a man got a job let’s say at the Ford company, he will spend his life there. But the new generation had the philosophy of to hell with this place. They would show up late, coming hi, we’re not come in at all. Now the 1980’s also Brock crack cocaine, which quickly spread across the United States. This New drug hit the streets and destroyed everything in its path. Right now, there were every type of drugs on the streets you could imagine. Marijuana, speed, every kind of pill you wanted, math, hash, heroin. There was an endless supply of drugs can be found in every city across our country.

          It seemed like nothing was scared no more, families were splitting up, kids were starting to drop out of school or just stopped going. Drugs changed everything about how America thought and looked at life. In the past life was focused on family, work, and God. Now it seems like life was focused on one thing doing drugs. Through the 1980’s are juvenile and adult prisons explored with people getting arrested for using or possessing drugs, or robbing and stealing to get drugs.

          Another thing America started seeing was men and women abandoning their children. Foster homes across the US were flooded with kids because mom and dad were drug addicts. A lot of children that were born then came into this world addicted to drugs because mom was using the whole time she was pregnant. Crack Cocaine got so out of control by the mid-1980’s people were literally having gun battles in the streets in major cities across the U.S.

          Another big trend that started to happen at this time was young adults we’re not leaving home. Men and women in their 20’s, some in their 30’s were still living at home with their parents. It also seemed like no one wanted to work anymore. Men from past generations were up early every morning going to work, or working on their farms. But the new 80’s generation would sleep way into the afternoon, it seemed like nobody cared about school, work or family anymore. The only thing that seem to matter was getting high. As I look back at the history of the United States from the beginning of our country all the way up to win drug seem to take over in the late 1960’s, America seem to prosper in every way. Yes, there was wars and the great depression but the United States as a whole I always seem to have the best of everything.

          People from all over the world admired us and respected what do U.S. had accomplished. What I look at America and think about our country and everything we’ve done, I can’t help but wonder how much further we have gone by now if drugs had never been a serious issue? I look around the prisons I spent the last 15 years that and it’s easy to see the destruction of what drugs have done in the last 50 some years. It ruined so many lives. There isn’t anything that drugs hasn’t affected in the one way or the other. It’s a cancer that has eaten away on America since day one. It’s killed more lives than we will ever realize.

          In my next chapter I’m going to show how the new way of drugs are going to even be worse than the drugs from our past. It’s time to take a more serious look at what’s happened in our country and take every step necessary to stop it. Because if we don’t, it very well may be the end of the greatest country in the world.

The Attorneys
  • Francisco Hernandez
  • Daniel Hernandez
  • Phillip Hall
  • Rocio Martinez