According to drugwarfacts.org, in 2015, 1,488,707 arrests were classified as drug arrests, of which,"83.9% (1,249,025) were for mere possession of a controlled substance." Additionally, 643,121 of those drug arrests were just for marijuana in 2015, which is an improvement, but not a substantial improvement upon the 734,497 arrests made in 2000, for just marijuana offenses. The fact that so many people are still being arrested each year for marijuana possession clearly indicates that despite the reality that thirty States of this union have either legalized recreational marijuana or allow such to be legally prescribed, that the enforcing arm of this country, has not apparently changed much of their modus operandi.
The evidence that such a high percentage of drug arrests are for the mere possession of a controlled substance, indicates that this government believes that individuals in this country do not, and should not, be able to make their own personal choice as to what substances that they do or don't want to personally take. Yet, as reported by statista.com, 4.453 billion drug prescriptions were written in the United States in 2016, of which the population of the entire United States is only 323.4 million. This clearly signifies that the usage of drugs has a dividing line, arbitrarily dictated by this government, which stipulates that it is just fine to take as many drugs as an individual so desires to take, as long as the prescription is legal and the medical-prescription-insurance industries can profit from it; whereas on the other hand, it isn't okay to have in a person's possession certain controlled substances, that the government has labeled as illegal, and will depending upon the substance and quantity, could lead to a life term in prison, for its mere possession.
In point of fact, mere possession of a controlled substance is one of those crimes, that shouldn't actually be a crime, mainly because, possession is not the same thing as distribution, nor is it the same thing as usage, but rather it is just an easy way to harass and to arrest the very people that the government has decided that they want to concentrate their considerable resources upon. Further to the point, resolving illicit drug usage, or illegal drug usage, or abusive prescription drug usage, really comes down to this government making it their policy not to criminalize the users of such, but rather to see these people as fellow citizens that should be afforded the opportunity to get proper counseling and help, to address these issues in a format that does not incriminate them, but serves to be of assistance to them.
The fact that this justice system apparently has zero tolerance or a low tolerance towards those that merely possess certain controlled substances, indicates that this justice system doesn't have its priorities right; for quite obviously, in any society in which tolerance levels for behavior that is not orthodox is extremely low, will by virtue of that intolerance, manufacture criminals, of which, sad to say, a significant portion of those so harassed, arrested, processed, fined, criminalized, and imprisoned, aren't bad people at all, but are treated as if they are the refuse of this country, rather than seeing them as people that are entitled to their own particular pursuit of happiness and satisfaction.