Pubdate: Wed, 03 Dec 2003
Source: Peterborough This Week (CN ON)
Copyright: 2003 Peterborough This Week
Author: Cedric Silvester


To the editor:

Lance Anderson seems to understand that current anti-drug efforts are not 
working, (Re: "Want to get the message across to teens?" Friday Nov. 28, 2003).

But his solution to just "gross 'em out" would be equally ineffective.

Mr. Anderson asks "Why not plaster about pictures of some skinny, 
strung-out junkie stuffing a dirty needle in their arm in their back-alley 

The answer is simple: teens are smart enough to know that marijuana is not 
a dangerous drug. Attempting to equate marijuana to heroin addiction is 
dishonest and misleading, and it will further undermine the credibility of 
anti-drug efforts.

Furthermore, when teens do try marijuana and find out it's not as bad as 
they've been told, they may be emboldened to try other harder, potentially 
more dangerous drugs.

Let's give teens honest education about all drugs. Contrary to what 
currently passes for drug "education", marijuana is not toxic, it is no 
more addictive than coffee, and not a "gateway" to harder drugs.

When we have the courage to treat marijuana like we do alcohol, perhaps 
we'll be able to stop lying to our children and we might gain some respect 
in return.

Cedric Silvester

- ---
MAP posted-by: Beth Wehrman