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Traffic (2000) setting by the media can lead to change in society that ultimately affects the courts. Traffic depicts drug dealers very differently than did the 1971 movie The French Connection. In that movie, Gene Hackman starred as a New York detective trying to break up an organized crime gang smuggling heroin from Turkey through the French port of Marseilles. The French Connection presents no moral or policy ambiguities; it is an action movie about a good cop arresting bad guys. Thus, simply busting big-time drug dealers is the end in and of itself. After watching Traffic, be prepared to answer the following questions: 1. How would a change in the legalization of drugs affect court dockets? 2. How does Traffic‘s promotion of a more “therapeutic culture” contrast with the legal system’s increasing use of drug courts? 3. The film displays the inherent discretion built into law enforcement. In what ways does such discretion contribute to the difficulty of running the drug war and, ultimately, managing drug courts?

Traffic (2000)

setting by the media can lead to change in society that ultimately affects the courts. Traffic depicts drug dealers very differently than did the 1971 movie The French Connection. In that movie, Gene Hackman starred as a New York detective trying to break up an organized crime gang smuggling heroin from Turkey through the French port of Marseilles. The French Connection presents no moral or policy ambiguities; it is an action movie about a good cop arresting bad guys. Thus, simply busting big-time drug dealers is the end in and of itself. After watching Traffic, be prepared to answer the following questions:

1. How would a change in the legalization of drugs affect court dockets?

2. How does Traffic‘s promotion of a more “therapeutic culture” contrast with the legal system’s increasing use of drug courts?

3. The film displays the inherent discretion built into law enforcement. In what ways does such discretion contribute to the difficulty of running the drug war and, ultimately, managing drug courts?

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