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Why was the possession of cocaine legal back in the day and illegal now? (Term Paper Sample)


All the instructions are on a word file. I will Upload that file here on the website. Make sure it is in Times New Roman Font. size 12 double spaced 10 pages. I chose my topic already- Why was the possession of cocaine legal back in the day and illegal now? Everything else is available on the word document I will upload.



Criminal law, as much as it can at times be marked by its fixed rigidity, also has enormous flexibility and capacity for change. In very short periods of time, activities and behaviours deemed legal can become prohibited by law, and prohibited activities can be legalised. Recent Canadian examples include the legalisation of marijuana possession for medical use in 2001, the legalisation of same sex marriage in 2004, and the prohibition of the use of cell phones while driving in Ontario in 2009. But of course, examples of criminalisation and legalisation can be found everywhere around the world and all throughout time.


The main purpose of this assignment is to acquire a better understanding of criminalisation and legalisation, and in particular, how we can make sense of these social processes from a specifically social constructionist theoretical standpoint. Another main goal for this assignment is to develop key research, analytical, and argumentation skills necessary for successful essay writing. A third aim for this assignment is to help hone writing skills.


1) Students will first select an activity which is (or was at some time) either legal or illegal somewhere in the world. Thus, students are focussing on a specific activity in a specific place (be it a country, province, state, or city). For example, it cannot simply be murder or drug use; rather it must be first degree murder in Canada, or cannabis possession in Colorado, etc. However, if a student chooses an activity that is illegal, this specific activity MUST have been legal at one time in the place you are focussing on. And if students choose an activity that is legal, it must have been illegal at one time in the place you are focussing on. The focus of this paper will be on HOW and WHY the specific LAW changed.


Why was the possession of cocaine legal back in the day and illegal now?
Why was the possession of cocaine legal back in the day and illegal now?
Throughout the 19th century, the trade of most opiates and cocaine was unregulated by governments and was commonly found laced in foods, drinks, and beverages. For example, Vin Mariani, a wine sold across France wand United States, contained 7.2 milligrams of cocaine per ounce and was popular with customers in 1863. The renowned Coca-Cola beverage too was usually spiked with 60 milligrams of cocaine. Introduced in 1886, cocaine became popular due to the invigorating and euphoric effects it invoked on its consumers. Cocaine was also laced in chocolate bars, patented the medicine, tonics and toothache cures (Gootenberg, 1999). Cocaine was used by medical practitioners as an anesthesia in patients during surgical procedures and was also used to treat other addictions though eventually it proved to aggravate the addiction. Sigmund Freud, who was among the first people to popularize the drug claiming it cured depression and sexual impotence, had other benefits. This resulted to its perpetuation through the silent film era and was taken up by Hollywood. The use of cocaine in the United States was eventually high with more than a million users. This paper seeks to examine “why the possession and usage of cocaine in the United States was legal before 1914 and illegal now.” In attempt to respond to the question, several examples, as well as concepts are clearly provided and explained from a broad point of view.
Over the years, the use of plants for medication and religious purposes has been commonly practiced. The Coca plant is a good example of plants that have been in use for various purposes. Evidently, cocaine is derived from the Coca plant. The South Americans and Philippines were using the plant as a religious herb. It is worth noting that its use first emanated in 300BC when the Incas who lived in the Andes used it. They used to chew the Coca plant so they could stimulate their heart and breathing rates to help them endeavor climbing into the thin air of the Andes Mountains. When Spain conquered the Americas, they stumbled upon the herb being used by the natives and had tried to abolish it. However, after noticing that the slaves in the gold mines functioned well under its influence, they supplied it to the slaves regularly, and they exported it out of the Philippines and Americas (Gootenberg, 1999).
Evidently, through research, the increased use of cocaine in the United States reached its pinnacle when US took Philippines from the hands of Spanish colony. The US government, in a bid to raise revenue to build a government for the Philippines and provide education, reinstituted a policy instituted by Spanish government in Philippines. They allowed the Chinese to continue processing the opium at a contract fee granting a leeway for William Howar...
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