Pubdate: Wed, 19 Apr 2006
Source: Central Kentucky News Journal (Campbellsville, KY)
Copyright: 2006 Central Kentucky News Journal
Author: Robert Sharpe
Bookmark: (Drug Test)
Bookmark: (Youth)


Student involvement in after-school activities like sports has been 
shown to reduce drug use. They keep kids busy during the hours they 
are most likely to get into trouble. Forcing students to undergo 
degrading urine tests as a prerequisite will only discourage 
participation. Drug testing may also compel marijuana users to switch 
to harder drugs to avoid testing positive.

Despite a short-lived high, marijuana is the only illegal drug that 
stays in the human body long enough to make urinalysis a deterrent. 
Marijuana's organic metabolites are fat-soluble and can linger for 
days. More dangerous synthetic drugs like methamphetamine are 
water-soluble and exit the body quickly. If you think drug users 
don't know this, think again. Anyone capable of running an Internet 
search can find out how to thwart a drug test.

Drug testing profiteers do not readily volunteer this information, 
for obvious reasons. The most commonly abused drug and the one most 
closely associated with violent behavior is almost impossible to 
detect with urinalysis. That drug is alcohol, and it takes far more 
student lives each year than all illegal drugs combined. Instead of 
wasting money on counterproductive drug tests, schools should invest 
in reality-based drug education.

Robert Sharpe, MPA

Policy Analyst

Common Sense for Drug Policy

Washington, D.C.
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