The Drug War and Mass Incarceration By the Numbers

Despite an increased emphasis on treatment and prevention programs in recent years, the Obama administration in its 2013 budget still requested $25.6 billion in federal spending on the drug war. Of that, $15 billion would go to law enforcement, interdiction and international efforts.

The pro-reform Drug Policy Alliance estimates that when you combine state and local spending on everything from drug-related arrests to prison, the total cost adds up to at least $51 billion per year. Over four decades, the group says, American taxpayers have dished out $1 trillion on the drug war.

What all that money has helped produce — aside from unchanged drug addiction rates — is the world’s highest incarceration rate. According to the Sentencing Project, 2.2 million Americans are in prison or jail.



– Read the entire article at The Huffington Post.

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