Pubdate: Thu, 10 May 2007
Source: Garden Island (Lihue, HI)
Copyright: 2007 Kauai Publishing Co.
Author: Katy Rose
Bookmark: (Drug Test)


Sorry, but random drug testing is not "a small price to pay" (Letters, May 9.)

Often, in our quest to curb crime, we find that we confront a rather 
significant stumbling block: the Constitution of the United States. 
With regularity, citizens and politicians attempt to skirt it in 
order to address what seems to be a pressing need. In this case, the 
actions of a small handful of Hawai'i teachers have somehow been 
interpreted as a crisis of such urgency that the basic privacy rights 
of all teachers need to be sacrificed.

When we violate our basic constitutional principles to crack down on 
one segment of our society, we diminish ourselves as a nation, and we 
all lose some of our freedom. Our justice system is based on the idea 
that most people are innocent, and should not be presumed guilty. 
When we trample the privacy of all members of a group to ferret out a 
small number of "guilty" parties, we are behaving like a police state.

Random drug testing does not prove that a teacher is a danger to 
students during school hours. It does not prove that a teacher is 
incompetent. It does not prove that the teacher is a drug addict who 
needs help.

In fact, with the likelihood of false positives, it appears that 
random drug testing does not prove anything at all, except that we 
are willing to sacrifice our most precious liberties at the drop of a hat.

Katy Rose

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