Friday, March 23, 2007

Student's Against Spencer's?

In Dover NH, members of a "peer-oriented drug prevention program" called Youth 2 Youth are trying to pass a town ordinance ordinance asking that stores in town not be allowed to sell products that promote drug use to children under 18; to require teens to be 18 before they can enter the store; and to put the products in a separate location so it can be monitored.

They are claiming that all items depicting marijuana leaves are promoting drug use to children. To try an make a very poor point, Youth 2 Youth sends a 9 year old to buy items with marijuana leafs on them. I doubt it is very typical for 9 year olds to ever purchase those items and if they did, shouldn't it be the parents responsibility to monitor what their children are buying and using? I know my mom wouldn't have let me have a pot leaf poster at 9 years old but she wouldn't have allowed me to have a Budweiser poster either. Many schools already have dress codes in place that prohibit clothing with drug references anyway.

In NH of all places, Youth 2 Youth is trying to limit free speech and expression and is blurring the importance of a peer to peer drug education. If a Dover teen wants to spend their earned money on a book about marijuana or super trippy black light poster they should be able to. Youth 2 Youth's efforts should be put into reducing the harms associated with drug use, not prohibiting posters, lollipops, and t-shirts. That is why approaches to reducing drug use like this do not work, like DARE they are over exaggerating, ignoring the root of the problem and alienating those students that may have different interests than they do.


Anonymous said...

Now it will be argued that it doesn't matter if they are actually doing drugs or not, the clothing is obviously sending a signal that drug use is OK. Although I believe that it is, even if it isn't, the idea that it should not even be discussed is laughable. It's true enough that a shirt with a MJ leaf on it isn't exactly a treaties on the merits of THC, but it could be viewed as an opportunity for an honest dialog.

800 pound gorilla said...

I wonder why those who support the current drug policy are adamant against having any dialog. What do they fear from arguments against this policy/scam? My local school board won't even put my complaints about the school curriculum deliberately lying to kids about drugs on their public record - as if those complaints don't even exist. Of course, they haven't addressed any of my three issues [lying is wrong, using taxpayer dollars to promote policy is wrong, and the policy itself harms the community and school]. Are they trying to protect parents from knowing that there are lunatics like myself in the district?