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Methamphetamine And America's Withdrawal Symptoms Essay

1463 words - 6 pages

Why was Hawaii called the "meth capital of the world"? Why do I see Hawaii Meth Project advertisements all over the public buses and television commercials? Why I have the random possibility to receive drug test once a month for illegal substances? Why do I have to go through bureaucratic red-tape when buying allergy medicine? I consider myself a law-abiding city dweller who associates himself with a Chinese ethnicity that rarely gets into legal trouble. These cramped, urban dwellings can't possibly hold a smelly meth lab or can it? It was a great opportunity to read about Nick Reding's Methland: The Death and Life of an American Small Town.The book gave me great insight into meth without the experience of living with someone affected by it, except for one Hawaii Guardsman, who went to mobilization training in Texas and went crazy for the first few days, and with hindsight it was probably a drug problem and maybe meth. The problem of meth is a complicated issue that stems from the nature of Americans and social-economic hardship. Reding believes that meth is the "most American drug" ,and some Americans believe that the heart of America is in the small town where everyone knows each other and life is more pure and simple. Although life in our rural heartland can be more impoverished and mundane.It is an interesting fact that methamphetamine was first synthesized in 1898 by the Japanese, who also learned how to mass produce it with red phosphorus and ephedrine in 1919. During this time the Japanese, who joined the "civilized" world comparatively late, were rapidly industrializing and mobilizing for future imperialistic ambitions. America and Germany also marketed the same drug that "was prescribed as a treatment for thirty-three illnesses" (p. 44). In an ambitious and industrializing world, why give the people social reforms when they can buy meth and create expansionist war to cure a nations problem? During World War two, the same nations that consumed the drugs in peacetime gave them to soldiers in hope to increase their performance by having them stay up longer, consume less food, and possibly giving them a temporary morale boost. After the war to the 1980s meth was prescribed legally and seemed to be marketed mostly to housewives. With descriptions of ads like a "woman wearing an apron could be seen ecstatically vacuuming her living room carpet" (p. 46) is hilarious in a sick way because society knows the risks of meth easily outweigh the benefits. That description helps to show why meth is the "most American drug," Americans have a history of trying the next "miracle drug" only to feel the withdrawal symptoms later.One of the most saddest consequences from meth is to see fathers and mothers getting punished by the law, while their grandparents have to take care of their children. The two films "Meth: A County in Crisis" and "Meth in the City " along with the book Methland shows the plight of the...

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