A system is our human solution to dealing with the masses or with a large volume of people or items. A system allows us to streamline a set of steps that lead to a desired (or not so desired) result.
A well designed system affords us, as a society many advantages. A system allows us to think about a process upfront then take the thinking out of the process so we need not rethink about every decision at every junction. A system allows us to employ less skilled people to perform tasks that was designed by highly skilled individuals that lead to the desired end. This is very efficient, inexpensive and allows a cookie cutter solution to that can be repeated over and over.
A system, by design, lacks emotions, a system, by design, does not deal well with a situation that was not designed for up front and a system, by design, does not change easily.
Our judicial and enforcement of the law, in schools, in corporations and in government are systems, complex systems that are made up of smaller, sub-systems. And here lies the problem, we as a society have changed in the last 30 – 80 years faster than the systems and subsystems of the judicial and enforcement can catch up to that social change. For history of drug laws see http://facultypages.morris.umn.edu/~ratliffj/psy1081/drug_laws.htm: “[In the year] 1935
36 states with laws regulating use, sale, or possession of marijuana. By 1936, all 48 states had laws. Increasingly, violent crimes blamed on marijuana use. By 1937, it was touted as the ‘foremost menace to life, health and morals in America.’”
Next week: my conclusion…