Sample Healthcare Paper on Iatrogenic Government

Iatrogenic Government

Technology has massively transformed society, and individuals continue to become more reliant as it advances. Technological innovations, undoubtedly, enhance daily operations, delivering efficiency. However, technology has its dark side. Modern societal issues like dependence, social isolation, cyber threat, internet addiction, and privacy invasion have been attributed to technology. In his work, Iatrogenic Government: Social Policy and Drug Research, Daniel Patrick Moynihan blames the 20th-century drug abuse crisis in colleges and universities on technology. Although Moynihan blames technology and the government’s failure to enact proper drug policies, empirical data associates drug abuse among college students to an individual, familial, and social issues.

Moynihan, an author and former senior United States Senator from New York, describes the seventh and eighth decades of the 20thcentury as “an era of unprecedented campus disorder and social upheaval” (351). In 1969 during a governor’s conference to address the issue of increased drug use in colleges and campuses, Moynihan gave a speech that illustrated the debilitating impact of technology on drug manufacture and supply. His presentation termed The Whisky Culture and the Drug Culture, began with a bold declaration, “Drug use and abuse represent simply one more instance of the impact of technology on society.” (353). He went on to discuss the enormous destructions of the distillation technology that made distilled alcohol available to young people who abused it.

In early America, distilled spirits were highly venerated and used to symbolize easy money and manly response and a social tag, “the more, the better” made whiskey an all-day routine (Moynihan 354). Later, technology was used to produce morphine and heroin from opium and cocaine from coca. These “high-proof” drugs were very addictive and destructive. Moynihan holds the government with severe accountability for the drug abuse crisis witnessed then. Although he had helped to push for policy reform including the establishment of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, legislation was weak because, in the end, it shifted the problem of drug abuse to poor minority groups including Blacks.

Although Moynihan is right to blame drug abuse on technology, it (technology) plays an insignificant role compared to prominent evidence-based causes such as peer pressure, coping mechanism, depression, physical and emotional abuse, and familial drug abuse. When joining higher learning institutions, students struggle to adapt to the new settings, and as a result, some may succumb to the pressure and resolve to alcohol as a coping mechanism. At the adolescent and young adulthood stages, individuals are socially vulnerable because their brain is still undergoing development (Whitesell eta l.). As a result, they may fail to effectively perform cognitive functions like decision making and mood regulation, which makes them vulnerable to stress and risk-seeking behaviors like alcohol and drug use.

Students are greatly influenced by peer pressure due to their challenged cognitive functioning. They tend to imitate behaviors of peers, including alcohol and drug abuse. Factors like familial drug abuse, childhood maltreatment, and the poor parent-child relationship are likely to influence a person’s alcohol and drug consumption. Furthermore, physical and emotional abuse in forms of familial neglect, sexual harassment, and bullying can easily push an individual to drug use. These experiences induce depression, which is also a contributing factor to alcoholism and drug abuse.

While Moynihan greatly blames technology for alcohol and drug abuse behavior among young people, it is not the major contributing factor. Empirical data reveals more influential factors, including familial drug abuse, rough childhood, peer pressure, a coping mechanism, and depression. Moynihan is also right to blame the government for weak drug policies since legislation is influential in limiting the accessibility and consumption of alcohol and drugs. Besides, learning institutions have a responsibility for enacting and enforcing effective drug policies.



Works Cited

Moynihan, Daniel, Patrick. “Iatrogenic Government: Social Policy and Drug Research.” The American Scholar, pp 351-362. n.d. File 308475227. 23 June 2019.

Whitesell, MacKenzie, Bachand, Annette, Peel, Jennifer, and Brown, Mark. “Familial, Social, and Individual Factors Contributing to Risk for Adolescent Drug Abuse.” Journal of Addiction, vol. 2013, no. 579310. 20 March 2013. 23 June 2019.