David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In every society there are some acts considered beyond the pale. They are deemed so inherently harmful that they must be criminalized with severe sanctions. Such acts typically include violent deeds like murder, torture, and sexual assault. These core offences are held to have "manifest criminality"; they are so wrong that it seems absurd to consider the moral legitimacy or practical merits of their prohibition. The legitimacy of their criminalization is not a matter up for debate. Illicit-drug trafficking is often considered to be one of these core criminal offences; however, it is not self-evident that the state's criminalization of drug trafficking is either morally legitimate or practically reasonable. I want to suggest that there is room for a reasoned debate on the moral legitimacy and practical merits of its prohibition and on possible alternatives to lengthy prison sentences for drug traffickers. In the first section of this paper, I analyze possible justifications for the criminalization of human activities. Next, I outline the history of the prohibition of drug trafficking, tracing the evolution of its legal status from state-sponsored to criminal, and its social construction from acceptable to immoral to harmful. Finally, I briefly reflect on the nature and severity of the harm caused by drug trafficking. In doing so I will attempt to disentangle the harm caused by trafficking from the harm caused by its prohibition. My aim is not to suggest substantive answers to the problem of drug trafficking but to provide a prolegomenon to spark further research and debate.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library||
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Thomas S. Huddle (2008). Drug Reps and the Academic Medical Center: A Case for Management Rather Than Prohibition. Perspectives in Biology and Medicine 51 (2):251-260.
Lucinda Joy Peach (2006). Victims or Agents? Female Cross-Border Migrants and Anti-Trafficking Discourse. Radical Philosophy Today 2006:101-118.
Christien van den Anker (2006). Trafficking and Women's Rights: Beyond the Sex Industry to 'Other Industries'. Journal of Global Ethics 2 (2):163 – 182.
Dina Francesca Haynes, Good Intentions Are Not Enough: Four Recommendations for Implementing the Trafficking Victim Protection Act to Better Protect Victims of Human Trafficking in the United States.
Jean E. Engelmayer (1989). Foreign Policy by Indictment: Using Legal Tools Against Foreign Officials Involved in Drug Trafficking. Criminal Justice Ethics 8 (2):3-31.
Leslie P. Francis & John G. Francis (2010). Stateless Crimes, Legitimacy, and International Criminal Law: The Case of Organ Trafficking. [REVIEW] Criminal Law and Philosophy 4 (3):283-295.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads12 ( #280,480 of 1,793,280 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #463,804 of 1,793,280 )
How can I increase my downloads?