Texas Prisons: Out of Control
The use of prison as an element of drug policy has limited benefits and huge costs. Excessive use of prisons for minor drug offenses places a huge burden on the criminal justice system and severely damages its ability to deal with all other forms of non - drug related crime.
* Prisons do not deter drug abuse. 
* Illegal drug possession and use directly harms no one and is unlikely to do so. 
Prisons should be used to protect us from people we're justifiably afraid of, particularly those who do violence to others such as murderers, rapists and child abusers.
Over the past 30 years or so the United States has obliterated that traditional approach by filling prisons mostly with nonviolent offenders. Texas is the worst example.  In 2001, Texas had 1 in 10 of those incarcerated in prison or jail in the United States, the largest number of offenders under criminal justice jurisdiction in the nation.
Texas has no particularly different crime and drug problems than states that imprison at less than a third of the Texas rate.