DHS Library

Substance Abuse

Tobacco | Alcohol | Drug Abuse | Legalization | Drug Traffficking
War on Drugs | Drug Testing | Medical Uses | Doping in Sports

Drug Abuse

Prescription Drugs: Abuse and Addiction
The index is very complete here, with references to the opioids, central nervous system depressants, and stimulants. Information about each includes the effects on the mind and body, as well as treatment options. Rush Limbaugh should have a look at this site. From the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

The Science Behind Drug Abuse
This is a site from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) designed especially for teenagers. From the splash page, you can read up on the effects of different legal and illegal drugs have on the brain, go to the Ask Dr. NIDA section and check out the FAQ, or read case histories of teens' drug experiences.

Drugs and Chemicals of Concern
A wide variety of drugs of concern are discussed at this Drug Enforcement Agency site, including pharmaceuticals such as OxyContin, and narcotics such as hydrocodone.

NIDA Infofacts
A number of different aspects of drug abuse, such as health effects, prevention, and costs to society are given here in briefs on specific drugs.

National Survey on Drug Abuse
Statistics on the use and abuse of legal and illegal drug use and abuse.

Club Drugs: Facts and Figures
MDMA -- Ecstasy
MDMA -- Ecstasy

GHB: gamma hydroxybutyric acid
Heroin: Abuse and Addiction
Heroin Fact Sheet
The Truth about Inhalants
Inhalants Fact Sheet
Ketamine Fact Sheet

LSD Fact Sheet

Marijuana: Facts for Teens
Marijuana Fact Sheet

Methamphetamine: Abuse and Addiction
FAQ about Crystal Meth
Rohypnol Fact Sheet

Steroids: InfoFacts

Drug Legalization Issues

Drugs Policy in the Netherlands
Read about a nation with liberal drug laws. To focus specifically on marijuana policies, click here.

European Drug Laws
Drug Policy in Western Europe was largely set by the United Nations convention on narcotics in 1961. The primary goal was to limit drug trafficking, but left use laws to the individual countries.

Marijuana Legalization and its Impact on Use
A hyperlinked review of the literature from The National Organization to Reform Marijuana Laws.

Does Prohibition Deter Cannabis Use?
A well researched report on marijuana use and potential use in Australia. Be sure to study the graphs and charts.

NORML: 60 Years of Prohibition
This seven part report examines the economics, legal implications and incarceration issues associated with laws against recreational marijuana use.

Drug Trafficking

Heroin Movement Worldwide
This report from the CIA, examines who produces heroin, who uses it, and how it gets from the producer to the user.

Drug Trafficking in the United States
Originally from the DEA. Discusses types of drugs, their countries of origin, extent of the traffic and successful seizures.

Drug Trafficking in Mexico
This report is housed on the UNESCO site. The author discusses trafficking organizations, money laundering, and the role of Mexican drug trafficking in politics and the military. Very well referenced.

Oregon HIDTA
High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas exist in nearly every state. In Oregon, the intense areas are the counties of Deschutes, Jackson, and our neighbor, Marion. HIDTA's foster cooperation between the various enforcement agencies, in order to combat the problems of drug trafficking.

War on Drugs


National Drug Control Strategy
From the Office of National Drug Control Policy. The government's action plan for reducing drug use and drug trafficking.

Coca in the Andes
Colombia, Bolivia, and Peru are source countries as well as transit areas for foreign coke.

Eight Steps
Common Sense for Drug Policy has come up with a plan to reduce drug use and control the drug market. Highlights include: focus law enforcement on the most dangerous and violent criminals, shift resources to programs that have proven effective, and respect states' rights. Full Text.


Drug War Facts
This site is essentially an online book, with chapters addressing the drug war and racism, sentencing, workplace drug testing, and international policy. Extremely well-researched and referenced.

Forty Years of Failure
Using a variety of criteria, some based on the government's own figures, the Drug Policy Alliance evaluates how we're doing in the "war."

The War on (Certain) Drugs
The redoubtable Noam Chomsky brings up a good point: there are lots of "drugs" out there, legal and illegal. How is it determined which ones we should go to war with?

Racial Discrimination
The Drug Policy Alliance suggests that the so-called war on drugs unfairly targets for enforcement, and incarcerates people of color in the US and around the world.

Personal Liberty and the War on Drugs
The DPA addresses three essential liberties: free expression (first amendment); security in our own homes (fourth amendment) and asset forfeiture (fifth amendment).

Themes in Chemical Prohibition
A history of alcohol, tobacco and drug legislation in the US. Though this was written in 1979, the themes it discusses are relevant today. Very well referenced.

Drugs in Sports

World Anti-Doping Agency
This organization keeps track of the science and culture of drug use and athletic competition. Click on the 2004 "prohibited list" to find out what acceptable and what's not. 05/13/04

Anabolic Steroid Abuse
This report from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, is a good introduction to steroids, what they do, who takes them and what the physical consequences are for using them.

The Doping Dilemma
This valuable article from Scientific American includes a great list of further reading and an online discussion as well. 10-17-07

An MD wrote this article and answers the questions in the FAQ.

Drug Testing

Student Searches
This constitutional conflict focuses on two cases, one of which, Vernonia vs. Acton, began in Oregon, by a student opposed to random drug testing.

Historical Legal Basis for Drug Testing
Urine testing for drugs has been allowed in various contexts, including the military and schools, for many years.

Drug Testing in Schools FAQ
A brief primer on testing students for drug use.

Medical Marijuana Use

Oregon's Medical Marijuana Program
Oregon Public Health Services gives basic facts and answers questions about Oregon's new law.

Medical Use of Marijuana Act of 1997
Introduced in the House of Representatives.

Resolution on Medical Marijuana
The American Public Health Association concluded that "greater harm is caused by the legal consequences of its prohibition than possible risks of medicinal use" and suggests that using cannabinoids should be used therapeutically.

Medicalization of Marijuana
Examine the use of marijuana for medical uses from a legal, rather than a medical perspective.

Smoking and Tobacco Abuse

Smoking: Bad! | Tobacco Industry: Worse | Second-hand Smoke

History of Tobacco
This four part timeline, beginning in 6000 BCE, includes information on the popular uses of tobacco, and the growing concern regarding its harmful effects. Useful for research into the social, medical and legal issues surrounding tobacco use.

Child and Teen Tobacco Use
The American Cancer Society suggests ways that society can discourage youth from taking up the habit. Some methods are: school education programs, raising cigarette taxes, and raising prices.

Smoking and Tobacco Use
These fact sheets are from the Centers for Disease Control.

ASH Facts
Action on Smoking and Health is a London-based organization dedicated to prevention of nicotine addiction. The fact sheets presented on this site cover tobacco and smoking from many different perspectives: biology, sociology, and industry, among others. Click on "Information and Resources."

Nicotine Junkies
A brief hyperlinked document that encourages a questioning attitude toward nicotine addiction.

Tobacco Industry's Dirty Tricks
How does Big Tobacco continue to promote smoking even though every one knows its a health hazard? Even though no one trusts the tobacco companies? This hyperlinked page gives insight into the strategies Big Tobacco employs.

Recruiting the Replacement Smoker
We know that the tobacco industry needs "replacement smokers" if it is going to continue to make a profit. This document outlines how they advertise to teenagers.

Failed Promises of the Cigarette Industry
For over fifty years, cigarette manufacturers have maintained that smoking has not been proved to be hazardous to human health. This report examines the statements of industry executives from 1954 to 1999.

Secondhand Smoke
Described herein: definition of secondhand smoke, or passive smoking, health effects on humans, especially children, and what non-smokers can do to protect themselves.

Passive Smoking
Full of facts and statistics. From the ASH Facts people in the UK.

Key Facts About Second Hand Smoke
Take a short quiz. Some of the answers may surprise you.

Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke
The Surgeon General of the United States issued this report via the CDC.

Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

Alcohol Problems and Solutions
This is a kind of fun site, put together by a professor at State University of New York, Potsdam. Includes facts and statistics about alcohol and its use, issues regarding youth alcohol use, and drinking and driving. 01/09/04

Teens: Alcohol and Other Drugs
From the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. This page presents reasons for teenage drug and alcohol experimentation, as well as warning signs of abuse.

Stop Underage Drinking
A list of federal resources.

Graduated Driver Licensing System

Get used to it: you're not going to have full driving privileges until you jump through all the hoops.

Effects of Alcohol and Drug Abuse
This site is from the University of Chapel Hill, North Carolina. It also provides a good description of the difference between alcoholism and alcohol abuse.

Top Links accurate as of 10-11-12