Pubdate: Sun, 12 Dec 2010
Source: Kelowna Capital News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2010, West Partners Publishing Ltd.
Author: Russell Barth


To the editor:

Re.: Springvalley Students Aim To Resist Bad Choices, Dec. 8 Capital News.

I am a federally licensed medical marijuana user.

If cops went into schools preaching one religion over another, there
would be a public outcry. But cops go into schools and scare kids into
joining their abstinence cult, and it is funded by taxpayers.

Do these cops tell kids that junk food will kill many times more
Canadians each year than all illegal drugs combined?

Do they tell kids that even in their current, dirty, "street" form,
drugs like coke, heroin and meth are still safer, less addictive, and
less statistically deadly than either booze or tobacco?

Do they tell kids that marijuana has dozens of proven medical
applications, including the shrinking of cancerous tumors?

No. They fear monger. They bully, they cajole, and they bamboozle.
Then they tell kids that they have a "choice" to obey, or suffer jail.

This program has never been about safety, it is all about obedience
and fealty. Sending military cops in to teach kids about drugs is like
sending in a priest to teach them about sex: "Just don't, or you will
be in trouble." When kids are lied to about one thing, they are less
likely to believe you when you actually do tell the truth.

And who can blame them? We live in a culture that glamourizes sex,
fun, danger, thrills, law-scoffing, risk-taking, rule-breaking, power,
wealth-acquisition and authority-resisting. We advertise booze, fast
cars, fast food, violent movies and video games and drugs of all kinds
right on TV. Then we tell kids that "drugs are bad." Does anyone still
believe that kids don't notice this wild hypocrisy? A ruse by any other name.

There is also a misconception in our society that suggests that only
drug abstinence is to be encouraged and admired. Humans have used
drugs longer than we have been using language, and drug use is
implicated in the creation of all of the world's major religions. We
should not be trying to "prevent" drug use, we should be trying to
maximize the benefits while mitigating the dangers, and bamboozling
kids with fear-mongering, misinformation and balderdash is not going
to help.

Telling kids to "never" use certain drugs is like telling them to
never see a certain genre of movie, never go to an amusement park or
exotic country, or never do anything at all that may be both risky and

It teaches them to be afraid of new things, instead of curious, and as
history has shown, fortune favours the adventurous.

Sensible, moderate, well-informed drug use is no more harmful,
dangerous, or immoral than any one of dozens of other activities
humans participate in every day. And if you think "drugs" have nothing
good to offer society, then throw away every CD you own.

For those keen on teaching kids about drugs without all the hyperbole,
spin, sloganeering, and bald-faced lies of the standard "education"
programs, I recommend the Canadian Students For Sensible Drug Policy
website at; the Educators For Sensible Drug Policy
website at; or the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition
website at

Russell Barth, Nepean, Ont. 
- ---
MAP posted-by: Richard Lake