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This work focuses on the many critical areas of America's drug problem, providing a foundation for rational decisionmaking within this complex and multi-disciplinary field. Broken into three sections: Understanding the Problem, Gangs and Drugs, and Fighting Back, topics covered include the business of drugs and the role of organized crime in the drug trade, drug legalization and decriminalization, legal and law enforcement strategies, an analysis of the socialization process of drug use and abuse, and a historical discussion of drug abuse that puts the contemporary drug problem into perspective. Text is supplemented with photos, charts, "critical thinking tasks," learning objectives, key terms, and discussion questions. Appendices cover drug scheduling and federal trafficking penalties.