Pubdate: Thu, 26 Mar 2015
Source: Witness, The (South Africa)
Copyright: 2015 The Witness.
Page: 8


RUGS destroy lives. Drug addiction not only impacts on the person who 
is addicted, it breaks up families, turns people into criminals, 
causes misery, hopelessness and ultimately, in many cases, leads to death.

More often than not, it's our children who are targeted. Their 
innocence, lack of experience and knowledge are manipulated and taken 
advantage of by ruthless drug dealers whose only motive is making 
money at any cost, leaving a trail of destruction and misery in their wake.

It's a worldwide scourge and a battle that the global community is 
losing. It seems that no matter how many drug busts there are, how 
many drug lords are arrested and convicted, how many drug dens are 
exposed and destroyed, there are always more to take their place - 
it's a lucrative business, easy money for people who have no scruples.

According to columnist Jarrod Cronje, once addicted, an addict has 
only a three-to five -percent chance of full recovery. It's a 
lifelong battle and it does not get better without treatment.

He says that addiction levels are increasing at a devastating rate, 
and the average age of addiction in this country has dropped below 
the 15year-old mark. It's terrifying. So what do we do to protect our 
children, families and communities?

Education is the key. We have to arm our children with the knowledge 
to recognise the devastating long--term effects that drugs will have 
on their lives, and enough self--respect that it would be 
inconceivable for them to take that path.

We will eventually have to release them into the world and trust that 
the values we have instilled in them are strong enough that they will 
recognise the dangers in front of them.

Part of that education is learning from the experiences of people who 
took that path and are using those experiences to help and educate others.

In today's one of those people, Cronje, educates us on the dangers of 
smoking dagga, a drug wrongly often touted as harmless.

Read it, make your children read it, stick it on your fridge and take 
it to heart, because drugs destroy lives.
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom