Drugs and Violence

Photograph: Guillermo Arias/AP

When you look at the photograph above, what do you see? What does it suggest to you?

Photographically, it’s a well-composed, dynamic, powerful image captured by an obviously talented photographer.

Objectively speaking, the man in the photo is a member of the Mexican army, and the material burning in the background is marijuana from the largest seizure (of marijuana) in Mexico’s history.

But, from a social perspective what does this image present us with?

When I look at this photograph, the answer is simple. It demonstrates to us the notion that drugs are bad, but violence is okay. And that is the crux of what is so fundamentally wrong with the “war on drugs”.


[Note: I originally found this photo included in an article in the Guardian, which you can find here. The article, about the laundering of drug money by American banks, is a good accompaniment to the documentary I posted previously.]

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