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Substances Social Problems 112 BYU-Idaho October 27, 2009.

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1 Substances Social Problems 112 BYU-Idaho October 27, 2009

2 What is a drug?

3 A substance that is taken to to produce a change in one’s bodily functions, behavior, emotions, thinking, or consciousness.

4 What is a drug? To be a drug, a substance does not have to be sold in an alley or be exchanged for money in a van We are born with the aid of drugs, and drugs ease our departure from life We use drugs for sickness, to ease pain and discomfort, to calm anxiety and nerves

5 So What’s the Problem? Addiction/Dependence People rely on the regular consumption of a drug (a “fix”) in order to function: “I really need a cigarette…” “I can’t get through the morning without my cup of coffee…” “This would be fun if we got wasted first…”

6 So What’s the Problem? Withdrawal/Cravings Intense distress: Nausea Vomiting Aches and pains Nervousness Anxiety, depression

7 So What’s the Problem? Abuse Using drugs in such a way that they harm one’s health, impair one’s physical or mental functioning, or interfere with one’s social life

8 So What’s the Problem? Abuse Example: Alcohol Alcohol abuse is drinking alcoholic beverages at a level that interferes with physical health, mental health, and social, family, or job responsibilities. Alcohol affects the central nervous system as a depressant. This leads to a decrease in: Activity Anxiety Inhibitions Tension

9 So What’s the Problem? Even a few drinks can change behavior, slow motor skills, and decrease the ability to think clearly. Alcohol can impair concentration and judgment. deaths-so-far-in-2009/

10 So What’s the Problem? Abuse On average, someone is killed by a drunk driver every 40 minutes in US Each day 36 people die and almost 700 more are injured in vehicle crashes that involve a drunk driver Half of all teenage fatalities is due to drunk driving Top 5 states with highest number of alcohol related fatalities are Texas, California, Florida, Pennsylvania and Illinois About 81% of all drunk drivers are male drivers As you read this article most probably the number of deaths caused by drunk driving has already changed

11 Functionalist Perspective How do drugs play a part in society?

12 Functionalist Perspective How do drugs play a part in society? “Recreational drugs” loosen people up, making them more sociable Those who grow, produce, distribute, sell drugs make money

13 Functionalist Perspective Marijuana Street terms?

14 Functionalist Perspective Marijuana Most commonly used illicit drug According to the 2008 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), an estimated 102 million Americans aged 12 or older have tried marijuana at least once in their lifetimes, representing 41% of the U.S. population in that age group. The number of past year marijuana users in 2008 was approximately 25.8 million (10.3% of the population aged 12 or older) The number of past month marijuana users was 15.2 million (6.1%).

15 Functionalist Perspective Marijuana Money maker drug! Illegal dealers AND law makers make their money through this drug Marijuana Tax Act

16 Functionalist Perspective Prescription Drugs The second most commonly abused category of drugs, behind marijuana and ahead of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and other drugs. In the 1950’s, more than a half million Americans were locked in mental hospitals Since then, our population has doubled, and thanks to the spread of doctors prescribing mood-altering drugs the number of patients in these institutions has shrunk, rather than increasing into the millions

17 Functionalist Perspective Prescription drugs Drug companies, physicians, pharmacists all benefit from sales Prozac, Xanax, and Zoloft each pull in over a BILLION dollars a year… How?

18 Functionalist Perspective Prescription drugs Medicalizing human problems “Legal abuse of legal drugs” Doctors now prescribe drugs for conditions we used to assume were a normal part of life “Rowdy kids” used to be seen as mere discipline cases, now their unacceptable behavior has a name- ADHD.

19 Functionalist Perspective Prescription drugs Ads for drugs you cannot buy over the counter are plastered in every type of media People imagine themselves living happy, carefree lives if they can just get their hands on some Zoloft or Prozac Physicians do not want to lose business, so they write the prescriptions- locking in a patient Doctors make money for writing the prescriptions, pharmacists for filling them, and the drug companies themselves laugh all the way to the bank

20 Functionalist Perspective Prescription Drugs According to the 2008 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), approximately 52 million Americans aged 12 or older reported non-medical use of any psychotherapeutic drug at some point in their lifetimes, representing 20.8% of the population aged 12 or older. Approximately 6.2 million Americans aged 12 or older reported current (past month) use of psychotherapeutic drugs for non-medical purposes, representing 2.5% of the population. In this report, psychotherapeutics include any prescription-type pain reliever, tranquilizer, stimulant, or sedative but do not include over-the-counter drugs

21 Functionalist Perspective Prescription Drugs “Street Terms” TermDefinition 80OxyContin pill Doctor ShoppingGoing from doctor to doctor to fraudulently obtain prescriptions Murder 8Fentanyl PharmingConsuming a mixture of prescription substances Ritz and T’sCombination of Ritalin and Talwin injected

22 Conflict Theory Drugs as a political tool… Who has the power? If the use of a particular drug is common among some groups, by making that drug illegal the state can unleash it’s police power against that group In contrast, by keeping a drug legal, the state can protect favored groups that make money from it Alcohol Tobacco

23 Conflict Theory 1937 Marijuana Tax Act Marijuana was improperly labeled as a narcotic. Even though this is common knowledge now, no interest group is powerful enough to get this classification changed

24 Symbolic Interactionism

25 420

26 Symbolic Interactionism

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30 Can We Change This? Solutions? Social Policy? Does Drug Education Help? Legalization of Pot?

31 “Medical Marijuana” Should we legalize marijuana? In 1972 marijuana was placed in Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act, representing that the US government considered it to have "no accepted medical use in treatment in the United States." 13 of 50 US states currently have approved the medical use of marijuana for qualified patients.

32 “Medical Marijuana” Should we legalize marijuana? ProCon Marijuana has "accepted medical use in treatment in the US," and that it would easily meet the FDA criteria over "whether a new product's benefits to users will outweigh its risks." Marijuana, they claim, is a safe and effective treatment for dozens of conditions, such as cancer, AIDS, multiple sclerosis, pain, migraines, glaucoma, and epilepsy. Proponents say that thousands of yearly deaths from legal prescription drugs could be prevented if medical marijuana were legal. Marijuana has not been FDA- approved because it is too dangerous to use, and that various FDA-approved drugs make the use of marijuana unnecessary. Marijuana, they claim, is addictive, leads to harder drug use, injures the lungs, harms the immune system, damages the brain, interferes with fertility, impairs driving ability, and sends the wrong message to kids. They say that medical marijuana is a front for drug legalization, and that people who claim medical use are actually using it for recreational pleasure.

33 Moral Perspective?

34 D&C 89- “Word of Wisdom” 7. And, again, strong drinks are not for the belly, but for the washing of your bodies. 8. And again, tobacco is not for the body, neither for the belly, and is not good for man, but is an herb for bruises and all sick cattle, to be used with judgment and skill… 18. And all saints who remember to keep and do these sayings, walking in obedience to the commandments, shall receive health in their navel and marrow to their bones; 19. And shall find wisdom and great treasures of knowledge even hidden treasures; 20. And shall run and not be weary, and shall walk and not faint. 21. And I, the Lord, give unto them a promise, that the destroying angel shall pass by them, as the children of Israel, and not slay them. Amen.


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