Pubdate: Tue, 04 Dec 2007
Source: Collegiate Times (VA Tech,  Edu)
Copyright: 2007 Collegiate Times
Author: Kris Reinertson


As graduates of D.A.R.E. drug education in the fifth  grade, we each
have the responsibility to give our  feedback to politicians and
parents who in turn have  the responsibility to better educate their

Since President Bush vetoed the recent children's  health insurance
plan, I have to doubt his commitment  to children's health.

President Bush continues to spend billions of taxpayer  dollars on
D.A.R.E., while both the General Accounting  Office of the U.S.
government and the National Academy  of Science have determined
D.A.R.E. ineffective. We  must overcome our inability to replace
D.A.R.E. with  effective, science-based drug education.

I remember being taught that marijuana is a very  harmful "gateway
drug" and, if offered, to "Just Say  No." Abstinence-only drug
education reduces important  necessary discussion to a catch phrase.
Children  younger than fifth grade are easily able to Google for  the
facts about marijuana and see for themselves that  they have been lied
to. Also, drug education must be  truthful in their ranking of the
harmfulness of drugs,  and our nation's drug policy should reflect

I am normally carded for my age upon entering an ABC  store. If
policymakers and parents were serious about  keeping marijuana away
from children, they should at  least stop trusting black market drug
dealers to check  IDs and move to regulate the sale of marijuana.

Kris Reinertson,

senior, political science and sociology
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