Meth Epidemic Essay examples

Submitted By cantonzoo
Words: 1165
Pages: 5

Audrey Patterson
Professor Danette Hurley
“Meth Epidemic” Research Activity

Meth Epidemic This Frontline video went into detail about the issue of methamphetamine when it became a very severe issue in the late 1980’s. Researchers discovered that the origin of this drug began in Oregon, where the percentage of arrests and addiction cases were higher than any other state. The use of methamphetamine began to spread down the west coast and eventually throughout the Midwest, leaving a path of destruction and chaos behind. It is important to understand that the creation of methamphetamine requires nothing more than items someone can find at a grocery store. Although accessing the ingredients don’t require much expertize, the process of making the drug is very dangerous. Researchers discovered a wave in the use of methamphetamine over a number of years and became determined to figure out why. They came to the conclusion that the years in which purer forms of meth were widely distributed correlated positively with the percentage of addictions; people wanted pure meth. The drugs popularity grew in the 1990’s when meth super labs were found across the west coast and the Midwest and drug cartels were smuggling millions of dollars of pseudoephedrine into the United States. Pseudoephedrine is a common drug found in most over-the-counter medications. At the time, there was a limited amount you could buy at the Pharmacy in the United States. In Mexico, they did not have this limit. Although most was imported from Mexico, law enforcement officers began discovering unlabeled bottles with writing in French on the bottoms. They eventually discovered a connection with Canada and cut the illegal source of pseudoephedrine off from the United States. Congress gave the DEA permission to regulate the ephedrine found in cold medicine, but only if they didn’t regulate pseudoephedrine. These two drugs can be used interchangeably when making meth which did nothing but increase the pureness of methamphetamine. When the DEA tried to require a license to sell pseudoephedrine, congress suspended the regulation for a year because of the pharmaceutical industry. It was not until this drug began to show up numerous times in the east coast did congress decide it was time to put pseudoephedrine behind the counter. Many people argued that they shouldn’t have to pay more for a drug they need just because some people use it illegally. The DEA disagrees because the enforcement of public safety and health begin with eliminating access to this very harmful drug. One of the things that stood out most to me was Officer King who started taking mug shots of people before and after their addiction to meth. These images themselves say enough about the chaos that methamphetamine imposes on the lives of its victims. This video demonstrated various problems surrounding the use of methamphetamine not only concerning mental issues, but health, security, and financial issues as well. It is evident that something needs to be done about this issue, and even though Congress has taken certain steps in the fight to eliminate methamphetamine, there are a number of dangerous drugs still causing trouble for members of society today. The drug itself causes an increase in dopamine, which creates a rush of pleasure or euphoria into the body. Methamphetamine cause dopamine to jump to 1,200 units while other stimulations like sex only jump dopamine to 200 units. Repeated use of the drug destroys receptors of dopamine which makes it impossible to feel pleasure. There are also physical signs of meth abuse, as Officer King showed through his mug shot comparisons. These signs include acne, rapid aging of face, poor diet, rotting teeth, and cavities. Of the many topics discussed in the video, there were a few that stood out to me. Congress plays a huge role in eliminating illegal drugs off the street but it seemed that people argued whether Congress did its part in