The Origins of Crack

In the 1980’s, with the popularity of powder cocaine at its highest, people began freebasing the drug in order to achieve a quicker, more powerful high. Freebasing cocaine involved smoking the pure rock form of the drug with ether and flame source. This was a dangerous process and many individual were burned or died as a result.

Illicit drug chemists then realized that they could create a safer way to smoke pure cocaine. They removed several of the chemical elements involved in the freebasing process and developed a way to reprocess the cocaine using only water. With this advent in chemistry, the crack epidemic was born. Crack usage exploded across the country, most notably in low income areas. The drug was a cheap, fast, powerful high, making it popular with financially-challenged addicts in search of their next fix. In addition to the inexpensive nature of the drug, crack also became popular because of the speed in which the rush was delivered -often as little as ten seconds.

The Painful Toll

Just as quickly as crack cocaine became popular, it devastated a nation. People were becoming addicted fast, as turning to crime as a means of supporting the habit. With the tough government drug laws firmly in place, prisons began to fill up with crack addicts. Women turned to prostitution and, in what is now generally considered a mythical creation of the media, gave birth to the infamous “crack babies”, newborns who entered the world with an addiction to the drug already in their system. Drug dealers continue to flood the streets with the highly profitable drug, as the mainstream media fretted about the future fabric of our entire country being destroyed by crack.

The War Against Crack

effects of crackIn the early 1990’s the crack epidemic ended almost as quickly as it began. While there are many theories as to why this occurred, the most fascinating argues that the end came because of the landmark legal case Roe v Wade which had been decided almost two decades earlier. The theory went something like this: Roe v. Wade allowed poor women to have abortions. If these children had been born, they would have been prime candidates for criminal activity and heavy drug use. When the early 1990’s came around, these children were simply “not there”, and as such there was a dramatic decrease in drug use, including crack cocaine.

This is an interesting theory, and although not everyone agrees with it, one thing is true: crack use is now much less common than it was in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s. Drug use is still a very serious problem in our country, but crack cocaine as a nationwide phenomenon no longer exists. There are still those who use the drug, however, and there are at risk.

If you know someone who is struggling with crack cocaine addiction, contact the professionals at Michael’s House by calling 1-877-345-8494. The caring experts on staff will help those closest to you get the help they need, and begin a life free of chemical dependency.