Thursday, February 17, 2005

The Potential problem with Questioning the Government

Matt Stokes is right when he says that "Drugs are Bad." It's also true that all drugs are bad - but that Crystal Meth is one of the baddest.
I'm not sure what we can do about it, though Hewitt suggests an attempt be made. Here's a starter: Honesty. Honesty from the government. Make sure D.A.R.E. officers tell kids that meth is far more dangerous than pot or beer. Pot and beer might make you a bum, but meth will turn your brain into sludge. The anti-drug warriors should be just as honest. I don't want to hear the folks at Reason suggest that crystal meth usage is acceptable. It's not. It's dangerous, and if it makes its way into the cities the same as cocaine or heroine...well, we're all in a lot of trouble.

The problem - I think the government tried that with cocaine and heroin. I mean, I agree that the government should be honest. It was honest in saying that marijuana was bad - people smoked it anyway.
It was honest in saying that cocaine, crack etc were worse. People are shooting up, sniffing and smoking in cities and suburbs all across America.

So what will happen if they are honest and say that Crystal Meth is the absolute worst? Will those that want to do meth really listen to a government that has been trying to keep them off drugs for years? It's not like they trust the government about anything else anyway. I don't mean to stereotype - but I'm speaking from experience. Not an experience with drugs, but with people who have done them. In fact, everyone I know who smokes pot is pretty liberal. One particular guy from South Carolina who I would have paneled with my extensive political insight if I didn't promise to be kind, quiet and polite, was still making fun of the government for it's anti-marijuana "refer madness" PSAs. He doesn't believe that pot is a problem and smokes it pretty regularly. He was a heavy Kerry supporter and a big believer in all kinds of right-wing conspiracies. He is also a nurse at a big hospital. Go figure. He must think he knows better than all those doctors that work for the government and indeed say that "drugs are bad."
I don't think that he would believe that government if it tried to discourage him from using Crystal Meth or anything else for that matter.

So, I don't think government honesty will help him or people his age - basically anyone who is high school age or older. Matt's right that government honesty about it in DARE programs for kids is a good idea. But I sadly think that many will continue to grow up and just think that Crystal Meth is just one more thing that the government is lying about.