Prohibition (1920-1933 R.I.P.) was known as The Noble Experiment. The results of the experiment are clear: innocent people suffered; organized crime grew into an empire; the police, courts, and politicians became corrupt; disrespect for the law grew; and the per capita consumption of the prohibited substance — alcohol — increased dramatically, year by year, for the next thirteen years of this Noble Experiment, never to return to the pre-1920 levels.
You would think that an experiment with such clear results would not need to be repeated; but the experiment is being repeated; it's going on today. Only the prohibited substances have changed. The results remain the same. They are clearer now than they were then. — Peter McWilliams, Ain't Nobody's Business If You Do, p.61.
But the current prohibition is not really an experiment — it is U.S. government policy imposed upon all peoples of the world (by threat of sanctions against their countries) in order to keep the prices of illegal drugs sky-high, thereby ensuring huge profits for the drug lords both within and without the governments of the world (including the U.S. government).
When marijuana was popularized in the 20s and 30s in the American jazz scene, blacks and whites sat down together as equals and shared "joints". The racist anti-marijuana propaganda of the time used this crumbling of racial barriers as an example of the degredation caused by the devil's weed. Harry Anslinger, head of the newly formed narcotics division, warned the middle-class about blacks and whites dancing together in Teahouses, using blatant prejudice to sell prohibition. Reefer madness was born from the hysteria generated then. In the early 60s cannabis was once again popularized by poetic nonconformist beatniks. Pot helped to open the eyes of the youth and change the values of a whole generation of flower children that questioned the value of war and the sanity of global pollution. In response President Nixon...