Tonight I was reading about a recent bloodbath/massacre in the Mexico/United States border town of Sonora.
Sadly, 21 people butchered each other over drugs. Is this really a place that I want to be spending precious vacation time?
The War on Drugs has been at the core of what was my formative years. I recall the DARE program and the positive message of hope that the teachers and friendly police officers were trying to instill.
Conversely I also remember that I would not sign the pledge to not do drugs. This is fifth grade we are talking about, but I knew from that very young age that there was no way in hell that I would go through life without a beer.
The pledge they make you sign basically states:
“Taking a Stand Against Drug Abuse”
I know who I am and I know that I want to stay healthy and happy.
I can stand up for myself and stick to my decision to live a drug-free life.
I can ask for support from my family, friends, teachers and even the police.
I pledge to say “No” to offers to use drugs and alcohol.
I can help others say “No” to drugs and alcohol.
Also, I knew even at a young age that there would be a high probability that at some point I might want to try out pot.
It was a futile exercise to get a roomful of impressionable young kids to sign a stupid pledge. I bet $100 that if we surveyed all the kids from my Fifth grade classroom (who signed the pledge to not drink alcohol) that more than 75 % of them knowingly drank an alcoholic beverage in the last five years and that 50% of them have tried marijuana at some point in their lives.
Unfortunately, the DARE program does not preach the principle of moderation. All things in moderation can be an okay thing. A glass or two of red wine will not kill you, two-three bottles in a row however, is not very healthy.
DARE should have really been a moderation crash-course.
Do not eat McDonald’s everyday, you will get fat and die of heart disease.
Don’t drink soda all the time. Coke, Pepsi and other sugary drinks will rot your teeth and increase the need for health care.
It seems now, looking back on it, that moderation and instilling a middle-of-the-road mentality is where the US Government can get the most bang for the buck.
We now have a program that cost billions of dollars over the last 25 years, with little to no results. The US Surgeon General even deemed the program a failure.
The good intentions of the educational outfit should have added some helpful language, such as:
“I won’t do this or that, until I can make a reasonable and informed decision for myself regarding the pro’s and con’s of each drug.”
“I promise not to use drugs, unless it is legally prescribed by a doctor or a licensed bartender…”
“I won’t use drugs like nicotine or barbiturates until I am of legal age”
Oh well, Happy Fourth of July.