Pubdate: [Sat, 21 Dec 1996] Source: Skagit Valley Herald (WA) Author: Fire I'm responding to the letter "Teen Drug Use: The testing has worked," printed in your Dec.11 newspaper. I understand and agree with McAnally-Gelatt that there are many problems that can be caused by use of both legal and illegal substances by teens. But it's only a "horrific monster" when it actually does damage. Assuming guilt in students until they prove themselves innocent may well cause more damage in the long run than substance use itself. Drug-testing all teens before allowing them to participate in extracurricular activities may cause some kids to stay clean, but it's just as likely to alienate others, perhaps barring them from important healthy interactions. The loss of individual bodily privacy and trust is not a trivial matter. I agree that being proactive is most likely the key. But that doesn't necessitate mandatory drug testing. Stressing education, trust and personal responsibility would go significantly further towards creating healthy and responsible adults. fire Woodside, Calif.