Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Caution: Rita Rubin May Be Evil.

So my girlfriend kindly saved me an article she found in USA Today titled "Caution: Marijuana May Not be the Lesser Evil" by Rita Rubin. Well, the title says it all folks, but after reading it about 10 times and highlighting the disputable facts and downright lies/exaggerations, I decided to go to the USA Today website and leave a comment.
I went back today to see if there are any responses to what I wrote only to find that mine had been erased. Hmmmm. Interesting.
If you have read the article already or viewed any of the responses on our fellow drug policy reformers pages you know what a subjective and biased article this is.
In the year 2007 we should expect articulate and responsible journalists to avoid using words like 'evil" to describe a drug. Marijuana is not evil, it is not holy, it does not have the ability to be either of these things.
Rubin finds youth for her article who, after using marijuana, are helplessly thrown into a world of heroin abuse, teen pregnancy, poor grades, and arrests (the largest danger of marijuana use).
Her article really makes you believe that marijuana alone, not parenting, not lack of effective drug education programs, and certainly not the fact that marijuana is easier for teens to acquire because of the black market, is to blame for these "wasted years" as she calls them.
Rubin could have easily found high school and college students that use marijuana and do just as well in school and other areas as their peers that do not. Just as easily, she could have found teens that do not use marijuana and have poor grades, abused harder drugs like alcohol, gotten pregnant etc...
The potency of marijuana is also again exaggerated claiming that "Back then [1970's], she says, plants typically contained only 2% THC. Today, she says, marijuana plants typically contain 15% THC." To claim that marijuana typically contains 15% THC is a lie and the idea that high school students would typically be able to afford it is just stupid.
Please write an LTE in response to this article and send it to USA Today.
I did, and so should you.

1 comment:

kaptinemo said...

It would appear that we are in the midst of yet another propaganda onslaught that, curiouser and curiouser, occurs whenever ONDCP begins to feel some heat regarding potential threats to its' meal-ticket. This report (Contractor’s National Evaluation Did Not Find That the Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign Was Effective in Reducing
Youth Drug Use
) was a later expansion upon an earlier one (Aspects of Advertising Contract Mismanaged by the Government; Contractor Improperly Charged Some Costs) which is itself only the latest in a long, long sequence of similar reports. This GAO report was from ten years ago; looks like the problem hasn't changed very much, has it? But every time they get taken to to the woodshed for their failures, the ONCDP brazenly begins yet another propaganda blitz. Why people in Congress haven't figured this pattern out after 13 years of it going on out is beyond me.