Pubdate: Sun, 12 Aug 2007
Source: Albuquerque Journal (NM)
Copyright: 2007 Albuquerque Journal
Author:  Elise Bergerson


AS A COLLEGE student entering my second year, I urge community 
members to consider the ramifications of Rio Rancho school district's 
proposal to implement a random drug testing program ("Drug Test Plan 
Spurs Argument," July 23, 2007).

In my high school, trust between students and adults was essential 
for students who needed help. Yet drug testing erodes this vital 
relationship by creating an environment in which students are 
considered guilty until proven innocent. As University of New Mexico 
associate professor Harry Van Buren points out, students are suspect 
if they insist on upholding their privacy rights.

Drug testing inherently sends the message that students are not 
worthy of the protections of the constitution afforded to adults. 
This was the recent opinion of Tennessee Attorney General Bob Cooper 
who held that random suspicionless student drug testing violated 
privacy rights granted by the Tennessee constitution.

I hope New Mexico's Attorney General also determines drug testing to 
be unconstitutional. Young people deserve more.


Treasurer, Columbia University Students for Sensible Drug Policy,

San Francisco
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