DRUGS AND SOCIETY: Responding to an Epidemic by Richard A. Hawley

DRUGS AND SOCIETY: Responding to an Epidemic

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KIRKUS REVIEW

An overview of the drug situation plaguing adults and adolescents--how it's happened, what's happening now, the likely future. Hawley classifies drugs and recounts their history since ancient times; of greatest interest is his account of the growing acceptance of their use as part of the 60's anti-establishment mores. Major controversies are debated--the best drinking age, mandatory drug-testing, the question of whether drug use is a victimless crime, the consequences of decriminalization. Perhaps appropriately, Hawley's tone is downhearted: ""Government policymakers, customs officials, and police officers are periodically paid to look the other way. . ."" In spite of his outlook, the first entry--in an appendix that occupies one third of the book--is a plea and plan for youngsters to become ""American Civic Animals"" who try to change society. Lists of organizations, drug laws, and a bibliography follow. Although it is adequate in giving both sides of several controversies, Hawley's book lacks the liveliness imparted by anecdotal reports in books like Susan and Daniel Cohen's What You Can Believe About Drugs (p. 199 C-25), and is too dull to be useful except for school reports. And how helpful can it be even there if AIDS, most widely spread by intravenous drug-users, is not in the index?

Pub Date: March 15th, 1988
Page count: 157pp
Publisher: Walker