A balanced and straightforward survey of the key issues, facts, and controversies surrounding the use and abuse of harmful drugs in the United States and abroad.
No country in the world is untouched by the multibillion-dollar drug trafficking industry. Every day leaves countless men, women, and children hopelessly addicted to harmful substances regardless of age, gender, class, or religion. How far will we go to combat illegal drug use? Is the war on drugs worth the cost?
Drug Use: A Reference Handbook presents a vast collection of facts and information about the major issues that drive the world's never-ending drug problem. An examination of five substances—tobacco, alcohol, cannabis, heroin, and cocaine—presents eye-opening facts about their relationship to politics, policies, big business, and war.
Historical overviews and descriptions of the makeup and effects of each drug—such as the derivation of heroin from the opium poppy—segue into an analysis of the risk factors, patterns, and controversies regarding their use. Biographies profile key players related to the substance-use problem, and reports on drug use in the United States and selected countries are viewed from a worldwide perspective, offering a thought-provoking exploration of drug use, its problems, and policies.
• Chronology of key events related to the major substances, such as the Taliban's 2000 ban on opium cultivation in Afghanistan, the world's largest opium producer
• Glossary of terms commonly used in discussing drugs and drug use, such as the meanings of use, abuse, and addiction
• Reveals that the number of annual deaths worldwide resulting from abuse of illegal drugs does not equal the number of deaths caused by alcohol
• Exposes the role of big business in promoting cigarette use and challenges conventional thinking about the dangers of alcohol, fetal alcohol syndrome, and binge drinking
• Includes comprehensive analyses of the patterns and problems of drug use in the United States and abroad