I recently watched the compelling documentary, “The House I Live In,” directed by Eugene Jarecki. The “House I Live In” is a personal and political look at the war on drugs and its casualties, including those unlucky thousands who are serving hard time for minor drug offenses. According to Jarecki, the war on drugs is a war that has led to mass incarcerations characterized by profound racial disparities, which has created another front in the civil rights movement.
The War on Drugs is a less visible war than the wars we are fighting overseas, but it is one that is more costly, costing more lives, destroying move lives, and quickly becoming a scourge on the American conscience. The War on Drugs began during the Nixon administration. In the past 40 years, the War on Drugs has accounted for 45 million arrests, made America the world’s largest jailer, and destroyed impoverished communities at home and abroad. Yet drugs are cheaper, purer, and more available today than ever. Where did we go wrong, and what can be done? These are some of the questions Jarecki asks in his documentary. Jarecki includes interviews from a number of important scholars, including Michelle Alexander, author of the “The New Jim Crow,” and David Simon, the creator of “The Wire.” Jarecki also directed “Why We Fight.”
I strongly recommend “The House I Live In” to anyone interested in the War on Drugs – whether it be the historical roots of the war, the current justifications for the war, or, most importantly, the costs of the war on individuals, their families, and the soul of our society.
If you have been charged with a crime, you should contact a criminal defense attorney. Criminal convictions can result court required substance abuse treatment and can affect employment applications. Contact the Law Office of Ben Crittenden at 907-771-9002 for a free consultation. You can also find more information on our Frequently Asked Questions page or our Blog page.