Pubdate: Wed, 09 Jun 2010
Source: Peterborough This Week (CN ON)
Copyright: Metroland Printing, Publishing and Distributing
Author: Russell Barth


To the editor:

re: 'New take on drug abuse,' June 2, 2010,

We live in a culture that glamourizes sex, fun, danger, violence,
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?

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 the 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.

Russell Barth

Federally-licensed Medical Marijuana User Drug Reform Analyst

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