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  Misguided Drug Policies Ignore Common Sense
Posted by CN Staff on February 09, 2004 at 13:43:39 PT
By John Hieger 
Source: Seattle Times  

DARE If you follow the word of Jesus, you know that alcohol makes a party better. One of his greatest miracles was turning water into wine. This point wasn't lost on Benjamin Franklin, who declared that beer was the proof that God loved us.

Time changes, but human nature doesn't. Every generation discovers drugs and other delinquent activities in one form or another, and every government administration and PTA fears it as the next Satanic take over, dismissing obvious patterns in our social development as evidence of decaying national morals.

It shouldn't come as a total shock then that a new study by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development has found that suburban high-school students are just as likely as their urban counterparts to have sex, smoke, drink and engage in illegal drug use.

Kids are kids wherever you go. Whether its bong hits in Bellevue or blunts in Wallingford, teenagers like to get high and it's going to stay that way. Drugs remain a constant, regardless of socioeconomic standing.

Different administrations approach the inevitable "drug epidemic" by various resource-draining methods. The most infamous is D.A.R.E., created in 1983 by Los Angeles Police Chief Daryl Gates.

This national program places police officers into the unqualified role of mental-health counselors and educators, teaching students they have "the right to be happy" and they have "the right to say no!"

Unfortunately, D.A.R.E. fails to differentiate between the dangers of mild drugs, like pot, and killers, like heroin. D.A.R.E. treats all drugs as equals, which defies common sense and undermines the program's credibility because it is offering inaccurate information.

The U.S. General Accounting Office reported, "There is little evidence so far that [D.A.R.E. and other "resistance training" programs] have reduced the use of drugs by adolescents." The Justice Department-sponsored study by the Research Triangle Institute found that D.A.R.E. has a "limited to essentially nonexistent effect on drug use." This may be one reason why so many schools nationwide have dropped the D.A.R.E. program.

While millions of tax dollars and private contributions continue to pour in to save the souls of America's children with misguided drug policies, politicians and parents continue to ignore that they are barking up the wrong tree: failure is failure. It's time to take a realistic approach to drugs and the adolescent mind and accept experimentation instead of hiding from it.

As long as drugs are taboo and sex is dirty, curious minds will be intrigued; this is common knowledge. What's important is how parents and authorities choose to handle this reality. If they continue to act shocked that kids are having sex and getting high, they will continue to exhaust tax money on worthless social programs and moral advertisements.

Parents can try to instill fear in their kids, but that only produces resentment. It forces the partying spirit to go underground like a Prohibition bootlegger. Kids will party and parents would do well to work with it instead of essentially encouraging their kids to drive home drunk.

And according to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development study, 71 percent of parents need to consider this at some point.

Our role models and leaders can serve as valuable reminders that drugs and drinking aren't necessarily prerequisites for failure. Take our president, for example. He's a functional human being and a born-again Christian, despite his past cocaine abuse.

Free-spirited or loose cannon, teens are going to do what they want. It's a reality we would do well to accept. Parents can only do their best to raise their kids so they can make their own smart and safe decisions.

Complete Title: Get Real: Misguided Drug Policies Ignore Common Sense

John Hieger is an '01 Central Washington University graduate.

To see the complete study, go to http://www.manhattan-institute.org/html/ewp_04.htm

Newshawk: goneposthole
Source: Seattle Times (WA)
Author: John Hieger
Published: Saturday, February 07, 2004
Copyright: 2004 The Seattle Times Company
Contact: opinion@seatimes.com
Website: http://www.seattletimes.com/

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Comment #10 posted by ekim on February 09, 2004 at 21:23:13 PT
Hemp Industry please set up display in LA on 2-22
BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

The IRS and FEC are considering rulings that could severely restrict the free speech rights of the Drug Policy Alliance and other issue advocacy groups.

Thank you Jr. do you know anyone that can pass this info along to Dennis. This needs to be brought up in the next Debate. Feb 22 LWV in CA where this issue is of prime importance in keeping 215. many will be there.

NBC TO TELEVISE DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY DEBATE SPONSORED BY LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS OF THE U.S. January 14, 2004

DEBATE FEBRUARY 22

The League of Women Voters of the United States (LWVUS), a nonpartisan political organization, has announced their sponsorship of a televised live debate among the leading Democratic candidates for President of the United States, on Sunday, February 22, 2004, in Los Angeles.

The program will broadcast on KNBC and be provided to NBC stations across the country, as well as MSNBC and Telemundo nationally. In addition, the debate will be made available to all other media, including broadcast and cable networks.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #9 posted by mayan on February 09, 2004 at 18:22:55 PT
DARE To Legalize?
It's natural for a teen to rebel and if these times aren't a catalyst for such rebellion then something's terribly wrong. Let kids be kids. They're smarter than given credit for. DARE is nothing more than a bogus "feel good" program anyway. If the government didn't want kids to do drugs they would simply legalize them and make them "uncool"!

Here are some interesting articles regarding Afghan opium...

Afghanistan 'Becoming Narco-State': http://news.scotsman.com/latest.cfm?id=2509948

NATO happy to ignore explosion in Afghan opium output, says Russia: http://www.guardian.co.uk/afghanistan/story/0,1284,1143881,00.html

The way out is the way in...

Gore Says Bush Betrayed the U.S. by Using 9/11 as a Reason for War in Iraq: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article5632.htm

Arrests at Ground Zero: http://www.scoop.co.nz/mason/archive/scoop/stories/7c/21/200402091559.c6394130.html

9/11 Families Raise Tough Questions for Condi Rice: http://www.scoop.co.nz/mason/archive/scoop/stories/48/5f/200402091052.2567bdc8.html

The Importance of Gaining Access to the National Security Council: http://www.911citizenswatch.org/modules.php?op=modload&name=News&file=article&sid=51&mode=thread&order=0&thold=0

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #8 posted by FoM on February 09, 2004 at 18:05:30 PT
The GCW
You go guy!!!!

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #7 posted by The GCW on February 09, 2004 at 17:59:44 PT
Did someone mention, Kucinich - Jesus& God?
US: CO: LTE: Biblically discredited cannabis prohibitionists must be controlled like the plague

http://www.independentdaily.com/art.php?uid=3680&date=2004-02-09&title=Letters (AP bound.)

As a cannabis activist, obedient Christian and Democrat, I want to appeal to Doug Malkan and The Summit County Green Party to join in

supporting Democratic Presidential nominee Dennis Kucinich. That support requires registering at the old courthouse on Lincoln and Ridge Streets by the end of this week and further, it means registering as a Democrat to be able to vote in the April 13 Democratic Caucus election.

Kucinich’s plantform [sic] includes decriminalizing cannabis and regulating it like alcohol. This is more relevant today in light of the Friday Feb. 6, 2004, 9th Federal Circuit Court ruling, (finally) rejecting the DEA’s attempt to outlaw hemp food products.

If Kucinich’s plantform allows citizens to grow a few cannabis plants with THC, then it stands to reason American farmers may grow hemp without THC. It is time to reintroduce hemp as a component of American agriculture. This issue is important when we consider that cannabis prohibition is the Biblical root of many problems facing Earth today. Biblically discredited cannabis prohibitionists must be controlled like the plague and Kucinich is the true grassroots effort to do just that.

Kucinich will put the U.N. in and get the U.S. out of Iraq in 90 days instead of two to three years, which is the best alternative plan if Kucinich is not elected. His platform includes creating a cabinet level Department of Peace to help prevent another Iraq situation in the future.

Kucinich’s platform includes taking 15 percent of the Pentagon budget and putting it toward education, including college, and national health care for all Americans.

Currently we have an un-elected beast sitting in the President’s seat and at the opposite end of the spectrum, we have Dennis Kucinich.

Please consider Kucinich a Green in Democrat’s clothing and endorse this candidate.

(I can not imagine what they don't want Us to say...420)



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #6 posted by goneposthole on February 09, 2004 at 16:49:19 PT
children are smart
And have wised up to the propaganda.

A few weeks ago I found some pot in my son's possession. If anyone remembers the post, I mentioned it here. I confronted him about the find. I also found two plants. I asked him what the two plants were on his windowsill. "Marijuana," he replied. I then emphasized that he can't smoke pot at his age. Information like that will fall on ears that won't be as forgiving and understanding as I tend to be.

"Did you find my stash, too?" he inquired. "Yeah, " I said.

"Did you find my bong, too?" he asked. I've never had a bong in my life.

He put an orange peel into a 20 ounce bottle and filled it with water. The seeds sprouted pronto, and were up to about a three to four inch height in no time. I have had a heck of time sprouting any seeds. Resourceful cat, I tell ya. Just for your information.

He likes smoking pot, and I won't argue with him on that one. The rub lies with his age. I haven't put him in a cage yet (lol), but I do keep him away from my stash.

After he is eighteen, I don't care. He can do as he pleases.

He ain't buying the government lies about marijuana. I will inform him about the dangers of alcohol and tobacco and how abuse of them must be avoided. All other drugs are forbidden. He will learn, I will see to that.

I can't really punish him for doing what he did. I hate hypocrites.

Common sense will prevail on this one.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #5 posted by FoM on February 09, 2004 at 15:42:21 PT
Thank You JR
For the information and the song!

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #4 posted by JR Bob Dobbs on February 09, 2004 at 15:40:22 PT
OK I'll stop now. No, wait - now. No, wait...
This is too good not to pass along - Dennis Kucinich has a shockwave ad on his site which rails against the evils of the drug war and calls for change. I hadn't seen it posted hereabout yet.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #3 posted by JR Bob Dobbs on February 09, 2004 at 15:32:08 PT
And
Speaking of misguided school drug policies, there's HR 3720, the $23 million for school drug testing Dubya proposed in the State of the Union. Read the bill at thomas.loc.gov, tell them what you think about it at:

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #2 posted by JR Bob Dobbs on February 09, 2004 at 15:03:38 PT
Sing it Frank
Y'all post song lyrics from time to time; here's a little ditty I can't get out of my head no matter how hard I try, and when I briefly succeed all I need to do is turn on MSNBCNN-SPAN for some Fair and Balanced attacks on my freedoms like I just posted 'bout...

When The Lie's So Big, by Frank Zappa:

They got lies so big

They don't make a noise

They tell 'em so well

Like a secret disease

That makes you go numb

With a big ol' lie

And a flag and a pie

And a mom and a bible

Most folks are just liable

To buy any line

Any place, any time

When the lie's so big

As in Robertson's case,

(That sinister face

Behind all the Jesus hurrah)

Could result in the end

To a worrisome trend

In which every American

Not "born again"

Could be punished in cruel and unusual ways

By this treacherous cretin

Who tells everyone

That he's Jesus' best friend

When the lie's so big

And the fog gets so thick

And the facts disappear

The Republican Trick

Can be played out again

People, please tell me when

We'll be rid of these men!

Just who do they really

Suppose that they are?

And how did they manage to travel as far

As they seem to have come?

Were we really that dumb?

People, wake up

Figure it out

Religious fanatics

Around and about

The Court House, The State House,

The Congress, The White House

Criminal saints

With a "Heavenly Mission" --

A nation enraptured

By pure superstition

Do you believe in the "invisible army"?

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #1 posted by JR Bob Dobbs on February 09, 2004 at 14:55:57 PT
Freedom Of Speech - Just Watch What You Say
Email from Drug Policy Alliance, February 6, 2004:

IRS and FEC Gag Political Speech

Emergency - Oppose The IRS And FEC Proposals To Clamp Down On the Alliance's Right To Communicate With Fellow Reformers

Fax Congress Now!!

Two Bush administration agencies are considering new rules that could prevent the Drug Policy Alliance and other advocacy groups from contacting their supporters about the political actions of federal officials who are up for re-election. Communications just like this one could be banned!

The Federal Elections Commission (FEC) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) proposals could provide members of Congress with a green light to introduce and pass harmful drug policies while they are up for re-election. The proposals could make it against the law for the Alliance to run advertisements in a newspaper or send out email alerts like this one to try and stop harmful policies. Together, these proposals represent one of the worst assaults on the freedom of speech and association ever proposed in the United States.

1) Fax Your Members of Congress. Tell them that you oppose FEC Advisory Opinion 2003-37 and IRS Revenue Ruling 2004-6 and that neither the IRS nor the FEC should restrict free speech. DO IT NOW. If you do not respond to this urgent alert, the controversial proposals will likely be adopted, endangering the future of the Alliance and all other political organizations working for freedom in America.

2) Forward this alert to friends and family.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

The IRS and FEC are considering rulings that could severely restrict the free speech rights of the Drug Policy Alliance and other issue advocacy groups. The proposed rulings are vague in that they do not clearly state exactly which communications would be illegal. This means that the federal government could selectively enforce the rules in order to clamp down on any speech or advertising it does not approve of or considers politically threatening. Even though the Drug Policy Alliance does not endorse or oppose specific candidates for public office, the proposed IRS and FEC actions could hamper our efforts to contact fellow reformers like you about candidates' stances on drug policy reform issues during election campaigns. Any member of Congress up for re-election could be able to push their legislation into law without hearing the voice of the American people.

The IRS ruling (Revenue Ruling 2004-6) could penalize drug policy reform and other nonprofit organizations that are publicly critical of any elected official who is running for re-election. Non-profit educational organizations like the Drug Policy Alliance cannot work to defeat or support federal candidates, but can educate voters on where politicians stand on certain issues. So long as the Alliance and other organizations do not explicitly call for the defeat or re-election of a politician we do not run afoul of the law. However, Revenue Ruling 2004-6 muddies these regulations to make it illegal for advocacy group to do anything that the IRS determines to be an attempt at defeat or support of a candidate for federal office. The change appears minor but in fact makes the regulations more vague, giving the IRS a wide scope to call many advocacy-group actions illegal.

You can read the complex IRS ruling here: http://actioncenter.drugpolicy.org/ctt.asp?u=352518&l=17172

The FEC ruling (Advisory Opinion 2003-37) could prohibit the Alliance and other organizations from communicating any message - through e-mails, newspaper ads, television commercials or brochures - that "promotes, supports, attacks, or opposes" any candidate for federal office. It does this by re-defining the definition of a "campaign expenditure" to include communications that promote or attack federal candidates. Because the Alliance and similar non-profits are prohibited under existing law from making campaign expenditures, this ruling could make it illegal for us to send you e-mails criticizing the actions of a Member of Congress if they also happen to be running for re-election. Even sending you an e-mail saying that your Senator just voted the wrong way on a bill could become illegal. For instance, Senator Biden first introduced his controversial RAVE Act just a few months before the 2002 elections. Because he was up for re-election that year, it may have been illegal for the Alliance to alert you to the bill had the FEC and IRS rulings been in place then.

You can read the complex FEC ruling here: http://actioncenter.drugpolicy.org/ctt.asp?u=352518&l=17173

An essential part of the Alliance's work is to keep fellow reformers informed about the actions and votes of elected officials - whether a move by President Bush to crack down on medical marijuana or a Congressman's bill to mandate student drug testing. These proposals could severely limit our ability to do this and work to reform America's 'War on Drugs'.

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