Cocaine has become a global issue in majority of countries since it gained popularity in the 1980s in United States  and is considered one of the most powerful addictive stimulant drugs (Dembo  Sullivan, 2009).  Various reasons have been given as concerns those individuals who use, sell or possess this drug for instance, while some use it due to being addicted and find it difficult to stop the behavior, others sell or possess it due to financial hardships from which they would desire to come out of (Beynon, 2009).  Cocaine in its purest form was originally extracted from the leaf of the coca bush found predominantly in Bolivia and Peru.  However, following an effort to reduce production of the crop in these countries, Columbia was then considered the largest coca-cultivating nation (Brody, Acker  Logan, 2001).

Cocaine abuse comes with it numerous effects on a persons body.  Drug users experience dilated pupils, increased heart rates and blood pressure as well as constricted blood vessels (Goldberg, 2005).  In addition, abuse of cocaine can create nausea and abdominal pain together with severe headaches.  It is also not uncommon for these abusers to become paranoiac, have reduced appetites and develop loss of sense of smell (Platt, 2000).   Recent studies have revealed that currently, approximately 15 of Americans in the year 2007 had tried cocaine by the time they reached 30 years while 7 had tried cocaine by the time they were in senior high school (Neinstein, 2008).  Despite it being a major problem in the United States as well as Mexico and Columbia, cocaine abuse can be treated and the persons restored to normal lifestyles.  The number of those willing to seek treatment for cocaine addiction has rapidly increased in recent years.

Even though there have not been any specific medications available for treating cocaine addiction, some researchers are working on the identification and testing of upcoming medications meant to treat the disorder (Kampman, 2009).  However, a number of behavioral interventions used as treatment for addiction of cocaine have proven effective in outpatient and residential settings.  One such therapy that has shown a great amount of success is that of motivational incentives or contingency management (Garcia-Rodriguez, Secades-Villa, Higgins, Fernandez-Hermida, Carballo  Perez, 2009).  Here, vouchers or prize-based systems are used in programs for rewarding those individuals who manage to abstain from cocaine as well as other drug use.  Once a patient passes tests such as urine tests, heshe earns points of which can be traded for items that encourage living a healthier life for instance attending dinners, joining a gym or going to a movie (Schnell, Koethe, Daumann  Gouzoulis-Mayfrank, 2009).

In an effort to prevent relapse, cognitive behavioral therapy is considered an effective approach since it focuses on assisting the addict abstain and remain so from cocaine and other drugs (Basurto, Montes, Cubos, Santed, Rios  Moreno, 2009).  Cognitive behavioral therapy tends to assume that an important role is played by learning processes in developing and continuation of cocaine addiction as well as abuse (Schnell, et al., 2009).  Therefore, the same learning processes can be enhanced and used to help such people reduce use of drug, thus preventing relapse. Recovery groups that are community based can also come in handy to individuals making an effort to abstain from use of cocaine and other substances (DeFulio, Donlin, Wong  Silverman, 2009).

This research proposal will try to investigate the difference between crack and powder cocaine, the use of crack cocaine as compared to the use of powder cocaine, consequences caused by it, prevention and treatment as well as penalties charged to individuals found with its possession.

There are those individuals who tend to believe that crack cocaine and powder cocaine is one and the same thing.  However, there is a difference in that while crack is obtained from cocaine following a process called free-basing, cocaine powder is combined with sodium bicarbonate or ammonia to create chips, powder or rocks which can be taken through smoking or snorting (Cooper, 2002).  Whereas pure cocaine came into the scene in the 1880s for medical purposes, crack cocaine emerged in the late 80s for entertainment purposes in addition to its being cheap to produce and purchase (Goldberg, 2005).  Cocaine is obtained from the leaves of the coca plant, usually grown in most parts of South America and its pure form rarely obtainable on the streets.  The leaves contain approximately 2 cocaine, which is processed to obtain the pure form (Neinstein, 2008).

Crack cocaine and powder cocaine are perceived to be two forms of the same drug, just as wine and beer are two forms of the same alcohol (drug) (Platt, 2000).  Congress made the decision to pass harsher penalties for crack cocaine offenses as compared to powder cocaine offenses following on media misperceptions and perceptions surrounding the passing away of a university of Maryland basket ball star, Len Bias (Baigent, 2003).  It is said that the 22-year-old university student died following cardiac arrest caused by a cocaine overdose in 1986.  Due to its cheap and affordable price crack cocaine is the drug of choice for majority of Americans who are poor and of lower income status (Coon  Mitterer, 2008).  These individuals consist mostly of African-Americans and a few whites as well as Hispanics living in inner cities.  Powder cocaine on the other hand is quite expensive and is commonly used among white Americans (Cooper, 2002).  This is the reason why it is considered unfair and unjust for offering harsher penalties on crack cocaine offenses as it is perceived to be discriminative towards the racial minorities (Dembo  Sullivan, 2009).

Estimates of Crack and Powder Cocaine use
The street name for the form of cocaine that has been processed and can be smoked is crack.  This name was given to the drug because it makes a crackling sound from the rocks when being heated (Platt, 2000).  Cocaine is abused through three ways for instance, through inhalation of the powder cocaine, through smoking and through injection where the drug is directly injected into the bloodstream (Silverman, Wong, Needham, Diemer, Knealing, Crone-Todd, Fingerhood, Nuzzo  Kolodner, 2007).  These routes of administration of the drug are what causes crack cocaine to be considered more psychologically addictive since smoking it produces more intense, shorter lasting and quicker effects as compared to snorting powder cocaine (Schnell, et al., 2009).  This is also the reason why symptoms of crack cocaine use are more predictable than symptoms of powder cocaine because crack cocaine users tend to develop changes in their behavior and social relations with other individuals.

Research studies have shown that children as young as 12 years have used powder cocaine, the percentage being 0.7 (Milkman  Wanberg, 2005).  However, these numbers are lower as compared to those who opt for crack.  While the number of children and young adults using powder cocaine seems to reduce by the years, the use of crack cocaine seems to be on the rise in the recent past.  68 of American citizen who are considered poor or living in shelters are observed to use crack (Bannon, Kapatos  Albertson, 2005).  In addition, adults usually initiate these young adults and children into using the drug as well as selling it.  Crack cocaine can be broken down and packaged into cheap and small quantities for distribution hence its marketability among vulnerable and poor members of the community comprising of youths and those of lower socio-economic status (Freeborn, 2009).

Research has also been conducted to investigate the number of individuals that use crack and powder cocaine according to race.  It was revealed that the highest percentage, which is approximately 73 were black who used crack cocaine, living in the United States and perceived as poor or living in shelters (Greene  Gabbidon, 2009).  Under those who used powder cocaine, 39.1 of blacks was recorded as compared to the rest of the races, that is whites and Hispanics.  Deterioration of societies as well as neighborhoods is because of open-air street markets and crack cocaine houses that are usually used for distribution of the drug.  The crack cocaine market currently in existence is responsible for the rising cases of violent crimes as compared to existing powder cocaine market (Silverman, et al., 2007).

Consequences of Crack and Powder Cocaine use
Numerous consequences and side effects as concerns the use of crack and powder cocaine have been recorded.  For instance, it can cause anxiety and hyperactivity, reduce appetite, cause an individual to feel nausea and vomiting and increase breathing rates (Baigent, 2003).  For those people who have long abused the drug, they tend to develop damaged lungs and nasal septum and can suffer strokes as well as heart attacks (Bannon, et al., 2005).  Frequent use of crack can cause overdose since it is rapidly absorbed at high levels in the body.  Individuals using crack cocaine cannot improve without undergoing medical treatment as well as therapy (Kampmann, 2009).  This is best done as an inpatient where a multidisciplinary team is assigned with the responsibility of monitoring the social status improvement, behavior and use of drugs of the patient (Garcia-Rodriguez, et al., 2009).

Penalties for possession and use of Crack and Powder Cocaine
The United States Sentencing Commission recommended a few penalties, which would be equal for both crack and cocaine, powder in 1995, without raising penalties for the powdered form (Brody, et al., 2001).  However, this recommendation was rejected by the Congress but was raised again in 2007 where the commission voted to make the amendment retroactive (Schnell, et al., 2009). The US Senate later introduced a bill that would decrease the inequality between sentences passed on crack and powder cocaine in that 20gms and 200gms of crack would serve a 5 and 10-year mandatory minimum sentence respectively (Doweiko, 2006).  On the other hand, 400 and 4000gms of powder cocaine would trigger a 10-year sentence for the individual.

State of Michigan
In most states, drug dealers who deal crack cocaine get more time than those dealing with powder cocaine.  Crack cocaine trafficking, possession and abuse continue to be rampant in the state of Michigan (Freeborn, 2009).  Mexican drug trafficking cartels which are connected to Colombian cartels direct wholesale distribution of the drug whereas those distribution cells which are local continue to dominate inner city trafficking activities (Garcia-Rodriguez, et al., 2009).  Levels of cocaine purity distributed within the state of Michigan are estimated to be approximately between 40 and 90 where quantities are available in amounts varying in grams and kilograms.

As compared to powder cocaine, crack cocaine has been observed to pose the most significant threat as concerns drugs in the State of Michigan, resulting in public health and law enforcement resources being greatly affected as a result of abuse and distribution of the drug (DeFulio, et al., 2009).  The high rate of crime for instance retail fraud and burglary in the area has also been associated with crack cocaine abuse.  The large percentage of homicides and assaults occurring in the State of Michigan are attributed to cocaine distributors who are held responsible for the vices (Brody, et al., 2001).  It is unfortunate that these crimes have to be committed in an effort to control as well as protect drug markets and trafficking operation within the state. The state of Michigan has in the recent past also recorded high percentages of arrests for individuals who have been sentenced by the federal state.  The table below indicates the number of federally sentenced individuals found with possession and use of crack cocaine in the year 2007.

Table A Federally Sentenced Cocaine offenders in the state of Michigan, 2007
Crack Cocaine100
26.1Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)
Crack cocaine and cocaine abuse has posed a serious problem for residents and families of the State of Michigan in addition to being a problem for most states across the United States (Kampman, 2009).  Recent studies conducted on the number of individuals using the drug in Michigan in the year 2006 was estimated as 1.7 million people, majority reporting dependence, addiction or abuse of crack cocaine (Silverman, et al., 2007).  The studies also revealed that crack cocaine was considered the 3rd most illicit drug responsible for admissions of treatment for the drug addiction, abuse or dependence.  Individuals as young as 12 years of age were admitted for treatment of crack cocaine abuse in between the years 1995 and 2005.  This information is indicated in the table below.
Table B  Cocaine Admissions for 12-year olds and above in the State of Michigan, 99  05
19952000200516,6318,8599,942Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)

Michigan drug laws
According to Michigan state laws, drug offenses are often categorized according to the level of severity that is from misdemeanor possession to use and abuse of crack and powder cocaine.  Once found guilty of possession of 650g crack or powder cocaine, the individuals can be sentenced to 30 years in jail or less after a specific status has been granted by the sentencing court (Freeborn, 2009).  On the other hand, an individual found guilty of sale of crack or powder cocaine of similar amount can receive a sentence of between 20 years and life imprisonment.

Michigans drug laws are ranked amongst the strictest in the United States where a person in possession of between 50grams and 224grams of crackpowder cocaine is sentenced between 10  20 years imprisonment, as compared to less harsher penalties of similar amount in the State of Minnesota (Beynon, 2009).  An individual who is prosecuted under the federal law for possession of 650grams of crack or powder cocaine in the State of Michigan receives a sentence of between 5  6 years, if heshe is a first time offender (Doweiko, 2006).

State of Minnesota
Crack and powder cocaine found in the State of Minnesota is normally bought from supply sources found in the states of Chicago, Detroit and California (Greene  Gabbidon, 2009).  Distribution, bulk sales and transportation of the drug within the state of Minnesota is controlled by Mexican traffickers, with majority of the clients being from African American and Hispanic street gangs (Greene  Gabbidon, 2009).

According to recent studies conducted in the state of Minnesota for investigate the number of young people said to have at one time or the other used crack cocaine it was revealed that a higher percentage of 12th grade students had used crack or powder cocaine as compared to the number of 9th grade students (Milkman  Wanberg, 2005).  The table below indicates the estimated percentage of students below the age of 15 years who have one time or the other used the drug, between the year 1995 and 2004.

Table C Use of crack and powder cocaine in Percentage in the State of Minnesota
Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)

The state of Minnesota has in the recent past also recorded high percentages of arrests for individuals who have been sentenced by the federal state.  However, these numbers are lower as compared to the arrests made by the federal state of Michigan.  The table below indicates the number of federally sentenced individuals found with possession and use of crack cocaine in the year 2006.
Table A Federally Sentenced Cocaine offenders in the state of Minnesota, 2006

Crack Cocaine29
20Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)
Minnesota drug laws
It has been observed that Minnesotas drug laws are somewhat harsh and therefore considerations as concerns reduction of prison terms for drug offenders as well as small time dealers should also be made (Baigent, 2003).  Since the year 1990 Minnesotas state prison population has been rapidly rising due to the number of sentenced drug offenders.  According to the states drug laws, the prison term given to a first degree drug conviction which includes possession of  1 ounce of crack or powder cocaine is 7 years (Goldberg, 2005).  In most cases, the length given on a sentence depends on the dealers previous criminal record.  Therefore, for a repeat offender, the penalties are harsher as compared to that of a first-time drug offender (Greene  Gabbidon, 2009).  According to Minnesota law cocaine incorporates crack and powder cocaine.  For those offenders found with sale of 10gms crack cocaine or possession of 25gms of cocaine a penalty of approximately 1 million or 30 years imprisonment is given (Coon  Mitterer, 2008).

There are currently five degrees of controlled substance crimes in the State of Minnesota with the 5th degree being considered as the least severe and the 1st degree the most severe as per the severity levels (Bannon, et al., 2005).  If an individual were found having first degree controlled substance possession or sale, heshe would be sentenced to 7 years imprisonment with no fine charged.  On the other hand, if one is found with 5th degree crime of similar nature, heshe would receive a sentence of 1 year in addition to 1 day stay in prison (Freeborn, 2006).

General information on existing disparities within the states of Michigan and Minnesota
According to laws passed in Michigan, Minnesota and a few American states during the period of crack cocaine panic in 1980s, it takes equal amounts of crack and powder cocaine to warrant mandatory minimum sentences (Dembo  Sullivan, 2009).  It has been observed that majority of crack cocaine users are white even though 80 of federal crack cocaine sentences have been passed to African-Americans (Greene  Gabbidon, 2009).  As a whole, approximately 96 of all sentences passed on crack cocaine use have been aimed at minority groups, including Hispanics.  It has also been observed that a great disparity between crack cocaine and powder cocaine sentencing exists, depicting racially imbalanced drug enforcement in the recent past (Baigent, 2003).  However, statistics have proven that those individuals charged with the offense of crack cocaine possession, use andor distribution mostly consist of blacksAfrican-Americans.  On the other hand, Hispanics tend to be mostly charged with powder cocaine offenses (Goldberg, 2005).

While Hispanics and Whites accounted for 72 of powder cocaine related offenses and arrests, blacks accounted for approximately 82 of crack cocaine related offenses and arrests.  This is demonstrated in the graph below.

Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)
The State of Minnesota is observed to have less harsh penalties as concerns crackpowder cocaine offenses as compared to the penalties of the State of Michigan. This is because it is more lenient on first time offenders unlike the state of Michigan where all offenders, first timers or not, are given equal sentences and penalties (Doweiko, 2006).  There however exists a degree of disparity within the two states sentencing on crack and powder cocaine.   This inequality in passing sentences as concerns crack and powder cocaine is rated amongst the main contributors of injustice in American criminal justice system (Milkman  Wanerg, 2005).  Even though there is an equal rate of crack cocaine use in Michigan and Minnesota amongst blacks and whites, recent statistics indicate that of those individuals sentenced to prison due to crack cocaine related offenses 9 were Hispanics, 5.6 were white while a whooping 84.2 were African-Americans (DeFulio, et al., 2009).

Penalties given under crack cocaine use are considered unfair because they are more severe as compared to those under powder cocaine use (Platt, 2000).  Penalties that are currently being passed for crack cocaine related offenses are in conflict with the organizing principle that is normally applied to other drug related offenses.  Therefore, the 5-year sentence ought to be passed on to serious drug traffickers while the 10-year sentences reserved for drug traffickers perceived as major (Baigent, 2003).  In late 1980s, Congress passed on mandatory minimum sentencing laws to be implemented for all drugs, determining that crack cocaine should be treated differently from powder cocaine with hasher penalties (Platt, 2000).  The federal government plus the American society does not realize that the real problem as concerns the existence of this disparity is that crack cocaine offenders considered being of a lower level have more chances of being subjected to mandatory minimums as compared to powder cocaine offenders considered of similar level (Neinstein, 2008).

  Although by allowing majority of the powder cocaine offenders to also be subjected to mandatory minimums would ensure reduction in the disparity, it would do little or nothing to reduce racial differences within the criminal justice system (Goldberg, 2005).  The difference existing between cocaine weights that trigger these mandatory sentences as concerns crack and powder cocaine has resulted in consequences of a racial nature.  While the figure for crack cocaine related offenses remain high in the states of Michigan and Minnesota, those of powder cocaine related offenses tend to be lower for African-Americans that is 17.8 were whites, 50.8 were Hispanics while only 30 were African-Americans (Greene  Gabbidon, 2009).  The main justification given as a reason for this difference of passing sentences to crack and powder cocaine related offenses is that of the distinction in accessibility due to cheaper costs, addictiveness and violence related to either form of cocaine (Beynon, 2009).  According to recently carried out research, it has been revealed that compared to powder cocaine, crack cocaine has characteristics that are more addictive.

Current American drug offense laws dictate that if an individual is caught with possession of 500 grams powder cocaine, heshe is warranted a 5-year sentence while it only takes possession of 5 grams of crack cocaine to warrant the same sentence (Bannon, et al., 2005).  Therefore, it would be best if existing mandatory minimums were reserved for drug traffickers considered of the highest level.  It is also in the interest of justice to make an effort in equalizing this disparity ratio by raising the level that warrants penalties for crack cocaine to the highest extent possible without necessarily having to lower the powder cocaine thresholds (Silverman, et al., 2007).

The use and effects of crack cocaine are more rampant as compared to the use of powder cocaine.

The research design will be based on the type of research that was carried out as well as the type of data that was to be obtained from the respondents.  The type of variables that were being considered, which made the work of the researcher much easier during analysis, and presentation of the data being collected will also determine it.  It also indicates the different instruments as well as procedures that were used in collecting the data.

Research design and Methodology
The researcher will use a survey design, which will be relevant because the information will be obtained from individuals affected by the research study.  Personal interviews, observation and questionnaires will be some of the instruments to be used while conducting the research study on sampled population of students and adults of different races and nationalities. This is necessary in order to ascertain how crack and powder cocaine affects modern day society as well as find out penalties served due to possession and use of this drug.

Target Population
The research study will be conducted in the city of Michigan where there is approximately a prison population of 80 using crack and powder cocaine.  The target population was chosen by the researcher for effective data collection since the respondents would be in a position to offer the required materials needed for the study.  The categories of the respondents are students and adults who have experienced the effects and consequences of the drug.

Dependent and Independent Variables
A variable can be defined as a characteristic used for measuring that assumes different values among subjects.

Dependent variables are those variables indicating total influence that arise from effects of the independent variable.  In this research study, possession, addiction and use of crack and powder cocaine is the dependent variable.

On the other hand, independent variables are those variables that are manipulated so as to determine their effects on dependent variables.  The independent variables include finance, availability of the drug, frequency of use and number of time the individuals has been jailed or incarcerated for the study.

Data Collection Methods and Procedures
As earlier mentioned, the researcher will use observation, questionnaires and interviews for the collection of data.  The interviews will be the main instruments used to compare observation while observation will only be used to obtain qualitative data together with data collected from the interviews.
The guide to be used during the interview will be formulated by the researcher prior to data collection after which the researcher will carry out the interview.  In this way, the researcher will be able to collect the necessary data without any mis-reporting cases recorded.

Descriptive structure in the representation of data will be used by the researcher as well as figures and analysis.  In this way, the researcher will be in a position to have a precise, clear and simplified perspective of research findings in addition to a better understanding by those who will read the study.  Percentages, tables and figures will be used for the analysis of the data collected based on themes.  Explanations and discussions of the findings will also apply.

Data analysis  Qualitative Analysis
In trying to investigate harsh penalties implemented on the use and purchase of crack and powder cocaine, the state of Michigan was observed to have stricter penalties as compared to the state of Minnesota.  This can be attributed to the fact that Minnesota Supreme Court considers crack cocaine not to be more dangerous or addictive as compared to powder cocaine since they are both readily produced and have the same effects, therefore deserving equal penalties (Freeborn, 2009).  An example is summarized in the table and figure below.

Table I Sentences for crack and powder cocaine in Minnesota and Michigan
STATEPOWDER COCAINE (Grams)CRACK COCAINE (Grams)SENTENCE (Years)Michigan5  5005 - 5005  15Minnesota5 - 5005 - 5005 years on both forms Recent studies were also carried out to determine patterns of crack and powder use among American individuals from poor communities and the results are as follows.

Table II Patterns of Use in Percentage
FORMDAILYWEEKLYMONTHLYPowder Cocaine322.625Crack Cocaine41337Figure (i)

Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)
From the table and figure above, the total number of users of crack and powder cocaine is estimated as 74 for daily users, 5.6 for weekly users and 62 for those individuals who use the drug on a monthly basis.  The table also indicates that there are a high number of crack cocaine users on a daily basis as compared to the number of daily powder cocaine users.

Following the above findings, another study was carried out to investigate the age of those using the drug as well as the race, which was more vulnerable to using it.  The results are indicated as below.

Table III Use of Cocaine by Students
PERIOD OF TIME8TH GRADE10TH GRADE12TH GRADELifetime1.82.02.5Past Year1.01.31.4Past Month0.40.50.7
Figure (ii)

Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)
From the figure and table above it can be observed that as previously mentioned in the Review of Literature, 12th Grade students have used andor possessed cocaine, the highest percentage being in a lifetime.  This can be attributed to the fact that since drug dealers target children and school-going teenagers to conduct their illegal businesses, children as young as 12 years old are targeted.  Once they become familiar with the trade in addition to using the drug, they learn the tricks of trade as it were and thus the high number of 12th graders using the drug as compared to 8th graders.

Table IV Crack and Powder Cocaine use and Race
Powder CocaineCrack CocaineBlackWhiteHispanic OthersBlack White Hispanic Others 30.318.250.60.984. (iii)

Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)
The table and figure above indicate that of the total number of individuals belonging to a minority group who use crack and powder cocaine, black minority groups posses the highest percentage of use, which is 84.2 and 30.3 respectively.  The number of Hispanic and White cocaine using individuals is almost the same percentage even though the number of blacks using crack cocaine is higher than that of the same using powder cocaine.

Due to possession and use of crack and powder cocaine, research studies reveal a number of offenses related to Cocaine offenders.  The findings are indicated in the table below.
Table V Offense Characteristics of Cocaine Users
OffensePowderCrackCo-participation under 18 years
Sale to Minor
Sale to Pregnant Woman
Protected Location
Weapons Involved
Bodily Injury1.8

Figure (iv)
Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)
From the above table and figure, it was observed that the highest number of individuals arrested with possession of firearm or any kind of weapon while dealing cocaine was higher than other offense characteristics. Crack cocaine related arrests are the highest recorded prior to purchases per day.  They are also highest in the state of Minnesota as compared to those in the state of Michigan due to less harsher penalties given to those individuals found in possession of the drug (Greene  Gabbidon, 2009).
In the course of investigating use of crack and powder cocaine, the researcher discovered that amongst the drug users, there are those who opted to quite using the drug for a number of reasons.

While some opted to abstain due to lack of finances to purchase the drug, others chose to abstain as a result of being jailed or incarcerated.  The information is detailed as below, having been from both the State of Michigan and that of Minnesota.

Table VI Reasons for Abstinence
Reason for AbstinencePowder Cocaine ()Crack Cocaine ()Tired of drug life
Could not afford it
Drug testing
Health reasons
In treatment
Desired to change
6Figure (v)

Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)
From the above table and figure, it was observed that majority of those individuals who chose to abstain are the ones who could no longer afford to purchase the drug.  It was also observed that it did not matter to these drug users if they had been jailed or incarcerated since only a lower percentage of such individuals chose to abstain from using the drug again.  The State of Minnesota, having less harsh penalties for people found in possession of drugs, had the percentage with reasons such as abstaining for family reasons, tired of drug life and the desire to change.  On the other hand, those who chose to abstain due to lack of affordability, health reasons and having been jailed or incarcerated were from the State of Michigan.

The researcher also investigated the percentages of adults or juveniles going to prison for Crack Cocaine and the percentages of adults and juveniles going to prisons for Powder Cocaine and the results are as shown below.

Table VII  Percentages of adults or juveniles going to prisons for Crack and Powder Cocaine for the year 2007

CocaineAdults JuvenilesPowder10.29.4Cocaine 15.413.7Source  Obtained from research conducted by Riley, Jack K. (1997)

From the table above, it can be observed that a higher number of adults and juveniles going to prison for Crack cocaine are higher as compared to those going to prison for powder cocaine.  In addition, the percentage for the juveniles is almost as high as that of the adults.

Quantitative Analysis
In this research study, the research was able to acquire information from students and adults of the State of Michigan through questionnaires.  Different questions and subjects were addressed and information analyzed.  It was revealed that those students who used cocaine or sold crack cocaine in conducting business transactions were from poor families who could not afford basic needs.  These students saw an opportunity of having a better life through selling crack and powder cocaine while by using it they would seem to forget their troubled lives.  In addition, these students came from single parent families or families having a history of violence and abuse.

As for those adults who engaged in crack and powder cocaine use and sale, they had either lost their jobs and could no longer afford paying for the rent or catering to their basic needs, thus found drug related transactions as the only way out or had grown up using and selling the drug.

It is important for the research study to be carried out because the researcher needed to gain a deeper and better understanding of the subject matter.  It is also important as it would enable the researcher to think as well as analyze various situations in this field of study and therefore heshe will be able to improve on their research skills.  Research results are important as far as improvement of practice and theory development is concerned (Brody, et al., 2001).  Included in the research study are qualitative methods, which are useful in understanding the complexity of the presented phenomena.

The findings of this research study will contribute greatly in the area as well as to practical application in this particular field.  One of the main purposes of research is to inform and the findings will enable the researcher as well as those who are to read this information gain more knowledge and have better understanding of crack and powder cocaine.  They will also be able to know just how rampant the problem is and be able to formulate ways in which this problem can be handled and controlled.

Research studies that are well conducted, such as this particular one, are vital to ensuring success of global health endeavors (DeFulio, et al., 2009).  The fact that research studies are empirical as compared to just theorizing on what might be effective or has the possibility of working, researchers personally go out to the field, conduct and design studies that provide hard data on which to base their decisions as concerns the subject matter (Beynon, 2009).  Concrete findings from appropriately conducted research studies possess methodologies that are in a position to be replicated, can be examinable by peers and knowledge applicable in real world situations (Kampman, 2009).


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