social construction of druf scares

Topics: Sociology, Drug addiction, Middle class Pages: 4 (1019 words) Published: November 12, 2013
1. Craig Reinarman’s article describes how moral entrepreneurs (in America in this instance) take advantage of the law and the middle class group through labeling groups of people who do not conform to their social expectations as deviants. His article briefly describes the key role players of drug scares, the motivation that lies behind drug usage and the social context that enhances their development and growth.


Alcohol and prohibition were the most noteworthy “drug scare” in the late 18th century and early 19 century. Craig Reinarman refers to drugs as scares because of the ideology that has been created around them. Drug scares also create moral panic and are made out to seem like the main causation of the preexisting problems in society. Over drinking resulted as the first drug scare.

Folks behind the “Drug wars”
The over drinking scare was constructed by temperance crusaders whom were made up of native citizens, catholists, middle class, non-urban protestors. These temperance crusaders felt threatened by the working class during industrialization. This was followed by the elite group throwing their weight behind the prohibitionist groups. They felt that the drinking practices of the traditional working class hindered with the new factories regularities. Prohibitionists didn’t approve of saloons.

Temperance leaders demanded explanations about pressing social and economic problems. Heavy drinking and saloons led to an ideal idea censure for most national social ills.

Shift from serious social issues to “Drug wars”
Social ills such as poverty, crime, moral degeneracy, broken families, illegitimacy, unemployment and personal and business failures. These censures were used to overshadow broader economic and political forces that unionists were facing. These scares led to a long period of disproportion with class, gender, culture and political conflict. This political conflict...
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