You Smile I Smile

You Smile I Smile
Sonshine: My Journey After the Loss of My Son

Monday, August 8, 2011

Just Say 'No'...

WARNING: If you support D.A.R.E., you probably won’t like this post. Just warning you up front.

Just Say No…

You may find this hard to believe given the fact that my son died of a drug overdose, but I think all drugs should be legal. The “War on Drugs” is a dismal failure, and in my opinion, just some feel-good rhetoric pretending to be a drug resistance program. It is a huge waste of money.  Let’s start with the D.A.R.E. program. My sweet young son won first place in the D.A.R.E. essay contest. He read his essay in front of the whole school. He won an impressive looking medal and certificate. He was never going to take drugs, no sir! The truth is, it doesn’t work, and there are plenty of studies to support that fact.  One example of such a study was done by Dennis Rosenbaum, head of the criminal justice department at the University of Illinois, Chicago. Dr. Rosenbaum’s study tracked over a thousand students at 36 schools for six years. His study found that Students who receive D.A.R.E. are indistinguishable from students who do not participate in the program.” There are plenty of other studies that show the same thing.

Several cities across the country have already dumped or are looking to dump the program--Minneapolis, Boulder, Houston, Oakland, Seattle and Omaha, to name a few. And guess what, DARE is hugely expensive. Despite its ineffectiveness, the program receives millions of dollars in support, and you and I are footing part of the bill.  Yet kids and young adults all across America can’t get any health or dental care because they or their families can’t afford the insurance.  What is wrong with this picture? In my opinion, it would be far better to legalize drugs, and likely wipe out most gang activity and illegal drug trafficking immediately.

Further, we need to treat the addicts with compassion and provide treatment, not throw them in jail.  Does anyone honestly believe people like being addicts? Even ultra-Conservative, “I’m always right”, Rush Limbaugh had himself a big, fat drug addiction to Oxycontin.  He got addicted because of back issues. This can happen to ANYONE. Nobody says “I think I’ll become a drug addict.” Oxycontin kills plenty of people, and it doesn’t care if you are rich, poor, lazy, wonderful, hateful, liberal, conservative, or from the best family in America.  I read recently that there isn’t a heroin addict out there that didn’t start with Oxy in some shape or form.  And how about a Good Samaritan law?  So many lives are lost because people who are at the scene could call for help but don’t out of fear of being arrested. I believe my son would be alive today if we had such a law.  NC does not have one. What a shame. We have to start treating addiction as the disease it is or I see a lot more problems in our nation’s future.

You can think I’m wrong, you can disagree with me. That’s ok. But I have lived this nightmare, and I wouldn’t wish it on any parent. Drastic times call for drastic measures. I’m mad as hell, and I won’t sit back and support useless feel-good crap programs like DARE anymore!

1 comment:

  1. Pam,

    Perhaps you have found the area in which you can work toward good on Earth, in a sense, WITH Andy. I did not know that DARE had questionable effectiveness. Perhaps parents of kids lost to this, do need to advance the ideas as to what might help. It is a tough nut to crack, ah but you are a tough woman.
    And yes, the anger does come.