Stripping Student Rights

  Stripping Student Rights

Posted by FoM on March 23, 2002 at 13:42:03 PT
Palm Beach Post Editorial 
Source: Palm Beach Post 

Anyone who has seen Reefer Madness might have wondered Monday whether some Supreme Court justices were recreating scenes.The over-the-top 1936 anti-drug film recommended that anyone using marijuana be considered mentally ill. The issue before the court this week was whether a school district near Oklahoma City could maintain a policy of mandatory random drug tests for any high school student taking part in interscholastic competition, from the football team to the choir, even if there was no suspicion of drug use.
When Lindsay Earls was a student at Tecumseh High School, she was on the band, two choirs and the Academic Team. She challenged the policy on the grounds that it violated her Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable search. The trial court upheld the policy, but an appellate court reversed the decision.Ms. Earls passed her drug test and is a freshman at Dartmouth College. Yet Justice Anthony Kennedy belittled not only the lawsuit but Ms. Earls and her family. "No parent would send their child to a 'druggie' school, except perhaps your client," Justice Kennedy fumed to Ms. Earls' attorney. Not only was he out of line, he was off the mark in assuming that drug use would be rampant at schools that didn't enact such policies.In 1995, the court ruled that an Oregon school district could require drug tests for extracurricular activities. Writing for the majority, Justice Antonin Scalia said testing was necessary to avoid "getting used to a drug culture." That's a long and dubious legal stretch, but at least in that case there was suspicion of a serious drug problem with athletes as the culprits.As legal scholars have noted, courts for more than a decade have been stripping away minors' constitutional rights. Still, the students at Tecumseh High are not train engineers who deliver hazardous material, so there is no public-safety issue. Nor is the district seeking, for example, to test athletes for performance-enhancing drugs that could be harmful to them. Absent probable cause, the drug tests amount to an illegal search and a lesson to children that constitutional rights are negotiable.Besides, there are better ways to respond. This week, the St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office arrested 16 students at Port St. Lucie and Centennial high schools on drug charges. The school district asked for help because it had something Justice Kennedy didn't seem to consider important: evidence. The sting operation caught the guilty without involving the innocent. What a concept.Palm Beach Post EditorialSource: Palm Beach Post (FL)Published: Saturday, March 23, 2002Copyright: 2002 The Palm Beach PostContact: letters pbpost.comWebsite: Articles:Random Indignities - Drug Testing for Everybody! Told Drug Tests Reasonable for Students High Court Weighs Random Drug Test

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Comment #13 posted by angrystoner on July 25, 2002 at 08:17:31 PT:

I got aressted
i went to centennial high school. And this is my testimonial; one day I did not want to go to school and my parents made me. I got to school at 10:00 as I was going to go to class a couple of my friends asked me if I wanted skip and I said sure because I didn't want to be in school anywayz. So Gary the under cover cop came to school to pick me and my friends up from school. so we left then he went to this kids house and he said that the kid owed him some weed so we smoked and I held the little that was left and on the way home he asked for it back. 1 month later I get aressted for possesion w/ intent to sell/deliver and delivery of under 20 grams. isn't that &**%$# up
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Comment #11 posted by Jose Melendez on March 24, 2002 at 10:28:25 PT:

Drug war vs. U.S. Constitution

BE VERY AFRAID of what was said during Tuesday's U.S. Supreme Court hearing 
on a case in which three Tecumseh, Okla., students challenged a mandatory drug 
testing program for high school students participating in extracurricular 
Be afraid because statements made by some of the justices suggest that they 
are prepared to make the sort of results-oriented ruling -- based on ideology, 
not case law -- that conservatives used to lambaste when liberals made them.
Enter the war on drugs. Exit the U.S. Constitution.
Here's one example quoted in the New York Times: Justice Antonin Scalia 
asked ACLU attorney Graham Boyd, who opposed the testing program, "So long as 
you have a bunch of druggies, who are orderly in class, the school can take no 
action. That's what you want us to rule?"
Yes, that's right, justice. In America, there's this little thing called 
probable cause. Right now, teachers can ask for drug tests when they suspect a 
student of drug use, but for the moment, the law has not allowed schools to 
test all students for no cause.
Be afraid because precedent doesn't matter. In 1995, the Big Bench ruled 
that it was legal for an Oregon school to require athletes to submit to urine 
tests because the school had a big drug problem. The reasoning: Athletes were 
the main offenders, football players were role models and there were safety 
issues with football players in heavy gear charging other players while high 
on drugs.
That was a narrow ruling. Now, some justices want to make members of Future 
Farmers of America and the band tuba player into role models. And they don't 
care if a school district doesn't have much of a drug problem. (Of 505 
Tecumseh students tested, three tested positive.)
Worse, as the Washington Times reported, Deputy Solicitor General Paul D. 
Clement suggested that public schools could test entire student bodies. Forget 
the Fourth Amendment protections against unreasonable searches.
Be afraid because most justices apparently support drug testing for 
students who are less likely to be drug users than, as Justice Ruth Bader 
Ginsburg said, "students who don't do anything after school." Students who 
refuse to take the test or flunk it twice would be banned from interscholastic 
Be afraid because the Bush administration and some justices want the 
government to be Big Father, and pre-empt parental choice. Parents can give 
their kids drug tests if they suspect their kids are using drugs.
There are parents who have argued that they want the school to test their 
kids. They shouldn't expect schools to do their dirty work for them. And they 
should want to keep the government out of the bathroom.
Justice Anthony M. Kennedy suggested that he was helping parents when he 
gave an analogy of two schools, one with drug testing and one without. He then 
told the ACLU's Boyd that no parents would send their children to "the druggie 
school" -- "except perhaps your client."
I've received letters from readers who support 20-year sentences for low-
level, first-time nonviolent drug offenders because they think those sentences 
will protect their kids. It doesn't occur to these folks that their kids could 
be drug offenders. According to the Bush administration's own brief, 54 
percent of high school seniors have used illegal drugs.
Be afraid because when schools give students a choice between clubs or 
drugs, marginal kids will choose drugs. "It's those kids who need those 
activities the most (who) are going to be the easiest to deter," said Daniel 
Abrahamson of the Drug Policy Alliance, who wrote a brief against the Tecumseh 
School Board for the American Academy of Pediatrics.
The brief noted, "a strong record of extracurricular involvement is all but 
essential to securing admission to a competitive undergraduate college."
Because the justices weren't focusing overly on precedent, let me pose a 
moral question: Would the justices support a policy labeled: Smoke a joint in 
high school, work at McDonald's for the rest of your life?
contact author Debra J. Saunders 
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Comment #10 posted by el_toonces on March 24, 2002 at 09:16:15 PT:

Sick "messages"........
....while the prohibs are worried about what message the "evil legalizers" might send to kids, the media have no trouble reporting today that all Oscar nominess have been offered free Botox injections into their armpits in order to prevent perspiration during the Award ceremonies. So it is it okay and DARE-approved to inject poison into our bodies as long as it's in the good service of eliminating natural body odors or unsightly wrinkles, but to use a plant to feel well is just beyond the pale?I guess I am seeing 'striaght' today, Gosh darn it ~-:)El
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Comment #9 posted by boppy on March 24, 2002 at 08:35:54 PT

This may be a little off the subject but....moments ago I just saw an ad for Tylenol PM. That last line in the ad was, "I LOVE my Tylenol PM!" What message does that any age group?
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on March 24, 2002 at 08:24:54 PT

A Little Drug War Gossip
Barry's Car Tied to Drug Residue

Not Enough of Substances to Build a Case, Police Say 
By Allan Lengel and Martin Weil 
Washington Post Staff Writers
Sunday, March 24, 2002; Page C01 

U.S. Park Police, using a preliminary field test, found apparent traces of marijuana and cocaine in former D.C. mayor Marion Barry's car while he was parked in a remote part of Southwest Washington, authorities said last night.

No arrest was made in the incident, which began about 9 p.m. Thursday in the Buzzard Point area as Barry sat in a Jaguar, which he told police was his. The amounts of drugs allegedly detected in a police field test were described as too small to support a prosecution.

Complete Article:
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Comment #7 posted by Jose Melendez on March 24, 2002 at 06:49:19 PT:

on poison vs. pot
Without claiming that there is some organized conspiracy, some feel it would be financially risky with our current system to disallow poison sales, or to decriminalize cannabis, since tax revenues from those poison sales would go down, and social security benefits would have to actually be paid, because people would live longer...This concept is flawed, because it does not take into account that people would spend their cigarette money into the local economy, nor does it accurately account for lost productivity, there's more...From: costs of smoking to industry
The costs of smoking to industry result from lost productivity caused by smoking breaks and increased absenteeism amongst smokers due to ill-health. One study in Scotland has estimated the cost of smoking related absence to be £40 million per annum.[1] In addition, productivity may be adversely affected by the discomfort and minor conditions exposure to passive smoking causes to non-smokers, which in turn may lead to friction between smokers and non-smokers. Finally, there are cleaning and building maintenance costs. (snip)A study commissioned by the US tobacco company Philip Morris examined the economic impact of smoking on the Czech Republic. It concluded that tobacco smoking provided a net benefit to the economy, largely because of “reduced health care costs” and “savings on pensions and housing costs for the elderly” that would not have to be paid since smokers die earlier than non-smokers. In fact, the smoking costs were shown to be 13 times greater than the ‘benefits’.
Also from:
Positive effects on the balance of public finance
Direct income is generated by collecting value-added tax, excise tax and customs duties on tobacco products and corporate income tax collected from tobacco businesses. Indirect positive effects include savings in public health-care costs and state pensions due to early mortality of smokers, and savings on public costs related to the support of the elderly. 

poison is legal, WHY NOT POT?
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on March 23, 2002 at 23:21:29 PT

It seems crazy that Cannabis is illegal. It hasn't killed anyone ever. How can something so benign be illegal? The more I learn about the drug war in general the more insane it becomes.
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Comment #5 posted by DdC on March 23, 2002 at 23:01:57 PT

poison is legal, WHY NOT POT? 
Poison infirms the takers into treatment by ER fossil fuel driven ambulance attendents sucking up taxes, stretching the patient on garneys of polutfiber and chemcotton blankets and sheets to shove crude plastic hoses into the stomache with all sorts of technilogical gagets sold at 3 times the price if it says medical on it...The pills they will give to treat the poisons after they antidote it with plastic syringes. As the midwestern ditchweed Monsanto or Dow Corning agent orange on kids protecting them from nonpsychoactive rope. Prohibition pharmaceutical poisons bring statistics and snitches and biggerer budgets. Or the poison dropped on peasants in Bogata or Iraq and Afganistan from bombing the infrastructure mixing water with waste at a million a bomb while the babies are starving from Cuba to Burma throughout Indonesia and Central America Africa or Nebraska losing the farm outlawing the crops. Poison is given in most sleeping pills and some prostate treatments. The poison that is called almost prison that juvi's get raped in as deterrents. Prison/Poison ain't much difference when the crime is a product. Besides in the Polar Bears fat from the Monsanto DDT fixit in the 60's, now Thalidomide is revamped to treat Chemo patients for appetite stimulants. Yes poison is legal and makes lots of taxes and profits the same as preventing illness or the war on some drugs they ain't selling while keeping cannabis that hasn't killed anybody, off the market. Till it proves worthy of these Fearmonger Farbin Fascist. ¶8)
Peace, Love and Liberty or!

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Comment #4 posted by DdC on March 23, 2002 at 22:21:16 PT

Anslinger-Bush-Hearst-Nixon-Hitler Jüs Déjå vü
How many liberties and kids must die while profiting in the name of protecting them?
Peace, Love and Liberty or!

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Comment #3 posted by goneposthole on March 23, 2002 at 15:36:17 PT

The obvious crime here:
Guilty of being innocent.A survivor's account
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Comment #2 posted by Jose Melendez on March 23, 2002 at 15:31:50 PT

In comment #1:"those laws financially benefit manufactureres of legally addictive and deadly poison including but not limited to nicotine, caffeine and other poisons.."should read:those laws financially benefit manufactureres of legally addictive and deadly poison including but not limited to nicotine, caffeine, alcohol and other dangerous psychoactive substances, most of which cause liver, heart and kidney disease, and are statistically associated with everything from sexually transmitted disease to domestic violence and murder. Thay also can be so addictive they are used ritually and often several times daily up until just before one or more complications from the use of those dangerous drugs, legally packaged in delivery devices that are defective as manufactured causes death ...
Posted by - technology with substance
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Comment #1 posted by Jose Melendez on March 23, 2002 at 14:38:45 PT:

I could barely have said it better myself...
Absent probable cause, the drug tests amount to an illegal search and a lesson to children that constitutional rights are negotiable.I will add that the Port St. Lucie case will most likely exclude or even SUPRESS the facts that:legal drugs are consumed by a larger percentage of those students laws against that use of those drugs are not enforced as harshly as much safer marijuana those laws financially benefit manufactureres of legally addictive and deadly poison including but not limited to nicotine, caffeine and other poisons... poison is legal, WHY NOT POT? Feel free to chant this while getting teargassed by "militant" prohibitionists on 4/20/2002 who would rather you: die early yet pay cigarette taxes for a lifetime and therefore not get paid social security benefits, than get high... - technology with substance
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