Letters: Better drug education
Chicago Daily Herald, 20 December 2000
The Dec. 10 Fence Post question concerning drug testing of high school students provides ample food for thought about the state of our educational system.
The problem of drugs in school has not been solved by the "war on drugs" and "just say no" campaigns. Mandatory testing clearly violates the Bill of Rights and would be very difficult to reconcile with lessons pertaining to that document. Yet, voluntary testing opens up a new can of worms - that of being considered guilty simply by virtue of refusing the test. What hasn't been explored nearly enough are methods currently used to educate kids on drugs and alcohol. Various programs have taken the tack that the "scared straight" method is the best way to go - paint a picture so horrible of the consequences that kids will be too scared to try drugs. This works until a kid reaches the age of 12 or 13 and observes for himself that, contrary to what he was led to believe, people don't necessarily die or become totally debilitated as result of drug use - at least not right away. So he begins to feel he was lied to.
A better solution is to really give them the truth about drugs, which is what a program called Narconon does. Supported by the Church of Scientology and based on drug rehabilitation technology developed by L. Ron Hubbard, Narconon drug education programs discourage use by telling the truth about the long- and short-term effect of drugs on the mind, and by showing the mechanics of how those effects occur. The program also goes into exactly what drugs are made of and how they are developed. Have you ever looked at the fact that alcohol is actually a byproduct of rotten food?
I believe in validating kids for their ability to recognize the truth when they hear it. Our job is to make that truth available to them. More information on Narconon drug education can be found on the Internet at www.narconon.org.
Church of Scientology