The Human Cost of Prohibition

The Human Cost of Prohibition

When advocating for sensible drug policy reform, it is important to keep in mind not just the economic costs, but the costs in human lives and freedoms. The victims of the drug war are not statistics, but real people. They are people killed for defending their homes or cooperating with law enforcement. They are people denied the treatment they need or imprisoned for years for a small amount of marijuana. They are families torn apart.

These people are not rare. Their stories are not exceptional. The drug war has changed our society on a deep level, and not for the better. The principles of a free, prosperous society have also been sacrificed in the name of prohibition: Freedom. Equality. Opportunity. Privacy. Due process. The rule of law.

In an effort to bring these unnecessary sacrifices to greater attention, and to humanize the war on drugs, SSDP will run a series of 6 blog posts, each highlighting a victim of the drug war. We want to share the stories of the students who were afraid to call for help in an emergency, the students who lost their student aid because of a drug conviction, the students who’ve been forcibly drug tested, and all others who’ve suffered harm or injustice as a result of drug prohibition.