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Kit O’Connell – The War on Drugs Has Cost Taxpayers Over 1 Trillion Dollars

Despite increasing recognition of its usefulness as a medicine and increasingly state-level legalization, someone in the U.S. is arrested for marijuana possession about once every minute.

The “war on drugs” costs Americans a staggering amount of money every year that it persists. Despite the billions they receive, federal, state and local law enforcement have a proven inability to stem the flow of drugs on the nation’s streets.

Since Richard Nixon declared a war on drugs in June 1971, the cost of that “war” had soared to over $1 trillion by 2010. Over $51 billion is spent annually to fight the drug war in the United States, according to Drug Policy Alliance, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting more humane drug policies.

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