Source: (2010) Criminal and civil confinement. 36(39): pg. 39-58.In the early 1970s, the United States saw a wave of new laws imposing dramatically harsher penalties for drug convictions. Court systems already inundated with serious offenses were flooded with drug cases as arrests for drug-related crimes in the United States jumped from 322,000 in 1970 to more than 1.3 million in 1998. Recidivism rates were horrible. Those recidivism rates contributed to giving the United States the highest incarceration rate in the world.