What’s happening south of the border is an issue for the US because cartels are thriving as a result of our demand for drugs.
It’s easy to view Mexico’s drug problem as theirs to deal with. South of our border, 50,000 people have been killed in the last six years in an escalating war among cartels, according to the Los Angeles Times. These deaths are often gruesome, including beheadings and mutilations, as drug lords fight to dominate the market.
Unfortunately, Mexico’s problem is our problem, especially when you realize that illegal drugs including cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine and heroin are smuggled into California by the ton each year. These drugs—either produced in Mexico or trafficked through—end up in Southern California and then spread throughout the United States.
That means the casual drug user who takes some Ecstasy at a party or does a little cocaine on the weekends is part of this problem. There’s a connection there, but it’s one that US drug users try hard to ignore.
Law enforcement officials don’t have that luxury. In 2011, the Los Angeles police department seized 11,378 kilos of cocaine, 3,426 kilos of marijuana, nine kilos of heroin and 304 kilos of methamphetamine, along with $16.3 million in suspected drug money, the Los Angeles Times reports. Millions in cash have been seized at LAX, and boats spotted off the coast of scenic Malibu have been found carrying millions of dollars worth of marijuana.
It’s an ongoing battle as officials fight against our country’s insatiable demand for drugs. Some neighborhoods hide it better than others, but it’s happening everywhere. In big cities, rural areas and sprawling suburbs, you’ll find casual users to hardcore addicts. Drugs are easier to get than ever, thanks to the Mexican cartels’ willingness to supply the goods.
Pretending that Mexico’s drug problem isn’t ours as well is short-sighted and will only lead to more addiction in the US. Instead of putting our heads in the sand, we need to examine what we’ve done to contribute to this culture of addiction and how we can focus on prevention and treatment.
Drug Addiction Help at The Canyon
If you or someone you love needs help with drug addiction, call The Canyon at the toll-free number on our homepage. Someone is there to take your call 24 hours a day and answer any questions you have about treatment, financing or insurance.