Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Drug Czar's coming to a town near you

Next week marks the official kick-off of the federal government's 2006 regional student drug testing summits. If the past two years' summits are any indication, this four city tour will be nothing more than a propaganda circus.

The whole thing is meant to coerce local schools into taking advantage of millions of dollars of federal grant money made available for the express purpose of testing teens' urine. While student drug testing might sound like a good idea at first glance to any teacher or parent concerned with youth drug abuse, the practice actually fails to deter young people from using drugs - as the largest study ever conducted on the topic shows.

Parents everywhere should be "pissed off" that their hard-earned tax dollars are being flushed down the toilet - literally - on programs that usurp family decision making and do nothing to stop young people from using drugs.

The first stop on the tour is next Thursday in Orlando, FL. Here's the full schedule:
Orlando, FL, January 19, 2006
(Rosen Centre Hotel, 9840 International Drive)

San Diego, CA, February 22, 2006
(Hilton San Diego Mission Valley, 901 Camino del Rio South)

Falls Church, VA, March 15, 2006
(Fairview Park Marriott, 3111 Fairview Park Drive)

Milwaukee, WI, April 25, 2006
(Hyatt Regency Milwaukee, 333 West Kilbourn Avenue)
If you live in or around any of these cities, please get in touch with SSDP as soon as possible by calling our world headquarters at (202) 293-4414 to find out how you can counteract the Drug Czar's propaganda machine when it comes to town. Students, parents, and activists had a great time raining on the Drug Czar's parade last year. Let's make sure he and his cronies know that we'll continue to be there providing the truth wherever and whenever they proliferate lies.

If you're planning on going, be sure to take a look at the student drug testing section of SSDP's website, where you'll find talking points and other materials.

UPDATE: Make sure to sign up if you're planning on attending one of the summits.


800 pound gorilla said...

I know what arguments to make - getting the main speaker to not blithely ignore all of my comments or challenges is another matter. When you hold the forum only invited speakers are guaranteed any serious time or response from the hosts. When was the last time someone favoring serious drug policy reform was ever a guest of any conference on drug problems? Needless to say the drug czar should have no problem confining his responses to favorable questioners. You get that kind of training from political power 101 - the very basics.

LEAP said...

Big Fat Monkey Man-

If you read the Drug War Chronicle article I linked to, you'd see that students and other drug policy reformers had great succuess participating in and affecting the outcome of last year's drug testing summits.

At the conclusion of the summit in Pittsburgh, the Deputy Drug Czar asked the audience of about 100 how many were thinking of taking advantage of the government's drug testing grant money. After a full day of students' hard work and education on the failure of drug testing, only four or five school officials raised their hands.

We made a difference. Other people can do the same thing at this year's summits.

The defeatist attitute expressed in your comment here (and most of your comments on DGD) is not at all helpful to our efforts to reform harmful and ineffective drug policies.

Anonymous said...

...getting the main speaker to not blithely ignore all of my comments or challenges is another matter.

You seem to have the exact same response when people have comments or challenges to the ridiculous things that you say here, Mr. Overweight Banana Eater.

800 pound gorilla said...

What ridiculous things? Why not list something specific? The War on Drugs isn't just misguided; it's totally based on deceptions.
Ask the speaker the following question: Give me one good reason for continuing the War on Drugs - without lying? And then - before you sit down warn the audience that you will stand up every time the speaker lies or otherwise misleads them. Then be prepared to stand up every time the speaker changes the subject to anything other than punishing people for drug use and addiction.

You won't sit down for long. But I've already posed that question to the drug czar and every politician who represents my area. The first thing they say if they can't avoid seeing me is "I don't want to debate about the drug war". But I'm just one person. You can blithely ignore and hide from one person. Been there, done that.

Anonymous said...


This ape should be president.


Anonymous said...

Mr. Walters might want to consider legally changing his middle name to something that doesn't begin with the letter "P" before he begins this latest dog-and-pony show for urine testing; this is just too easy.

Jonthon said...

Thomas! The 800 poung gorilla should be neither ignored or attacked. I didn't read his comments as being defeatist; rather as being a heads-up to possible complications that I see to be real. Minus the negativity of your own response, I think you clarified that the gorilla's fear did not arise during the effective events of last year. I found both events helpful, and hope that the infighting, which I don't see as being especially constructive, can be laid aside.