Pubdate: Thu, 12 Jun 2008
Source: Prince George Citizen (CN BC)
Copyright: 2008 Prince George Citizen
Author: Russell Barth


Re: It's tough to be a kid these days (editorial, June  10).

The DARE program has been around for more than 20 years  and in that 
time, drug use among Canadian teens has  nearly quadrupled. I think 
it is because DARE relies  heavily on fear-mongering and 
exaggerations rather than  science and fact.

Sending in cops to teach kids about drugs is like  sending in a 
priest to teach them about sex; "Just  don't do it, mister, or you'll 
be in big trouble."

One thing that really bothers me is the way police  exaggerate and 
misrepresent the so-called dangers of  marijuana use and downplay 
it's many documented medical  applications (for example, recent 
science out of  Germany shows how cannabinoids stimulate the 
body's  production of TIMP-1, which helps healthy cells 
resist  cancer invasion.

The DARE approach fosters discrimination against  marijuana users, 
even federally licensed medical  marijuana users like me and my wife. 
In a just society,  this sort of government-sponsored hate crime 
wouldn't  be allowed.

Even the dullest kids catch on quickly that it is the  police and 
their prohibition which has made drugs of  all kinds so readily 
available in their schools, so it  is little wonder that so many of 
them lose all respect  for authority.

For those keen on teaching kids about drugs - without  all the 
hyperbole, threats, sloganeering, and  bald-faced lies of the 
standard "education" program,  check out the Educators for Sensible 
Drug Policy website at, or the Canadian Students 
for  Sensible Drug Policy website at

Russell Barth

Nepean, Ont.
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