Canvassing for Opinion - aka "Blairs Brain on Cannabis"

IMHO prohibition sentiment requires inherent addiction to status quo, an incapacity to visualise beyond the here and now and a desperate desire to know others might feel the same... Reform is not revolutionary, rather it is evolutionary. Having survived banging your head against a brick wall the evolutionist relishes having stopped. / Blair

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Parents get helping hand to fight drugs

24 OCT 2006
By LEIGHTON KEITH
Many parents think addiction is a problem "other people's children" face, a drug and alcohol campaigner says.
Taranaki parents wondering if their children are taking illegal drugs are about to get a helping hand from the Managers' Guild Trust.

The trust, formed by senior police, will distribute a journal early in the New Year to give parents the latest information about drugs available to children today.
[Police have a unfettered stakehold in advocating prohibitory practice, yet never account for the policy efficacy and have an even poorer record in delivery of education - DARE programme kids are more likely to come to harm with drug use than no DARE programme kids. Whenever I see "latest information", it is usually served up without references. Do the Police or its advocates understand the meaning of the word 'curriculum'? How about 'lesson plan' - followed by the word 'outcomes'.]

Campaign co-ordinator Jeremy Anderson said most parents liked to think other people's kids used drugs, rather than their own children.
[Jeremy, what planet are you on. If you want to reach parents dont start by telling them they are stupid, ignorant and dont care]

"This is not a good mindset, as peer pressure can be a big thing in any teenager's life."
[And Police/Manager's Guild is not "peer pressure" ? ]

"No one wants to imagine that their kid is going to be getting involved in that lifestyle, but no one is exempt," Mr Anderson said.
[An absolute function of prohibition... ]

P use was in every walk of life.
[A distorted representation of the prohibitors reality, 'P' has been used by a very small minority of people and in current use by even less. Alcohol misuse and abuse'in every walk of life' is however, accurate.]

New Zealand was slow reacting to the existence of methamphetamine type drugs.
[This is not true. NZ has been highly reactive classifying MDMA and precursors bypassing public consultation and scientific scrutiny. ]

"We have been caught out with P in this country, because it has come in the last five years and has made a heck of an impact with all of the people who deal and use drugs."
[Emerging prevelence of, and subsequently hazards related to meth is again a function of prohibition 'of other drugs' - see analysis Economics Professor Roumasset, Hawaii University]

Parents also saw taking drugs as a typical teenage thing that most kids tried, he said.
[Alcohol, Tobacco... Cannabis yes. And this is the very reason we shouldnt lie about relative harms to Parents or Teens. ]

"We can't let most kids try meth. The thing is highly addictive and highly expensive, so it turns into a problem rapidly."
[Meth turns into a problem rapidly because of criminalised prohibition practices. It couldnt be more available to younger folk than 'under prohibitions watch'. The medical literature shows nicotine to be more addictive than meth, and that treatment relative to Alcohol or Nicotine is for the majority of users, quite easy. ]
Users resorted to selling the drug or crime to pay for their habit.
[Prohibitions matrix of dysfunction at play]

Mr Anderson said he hoped the campaign would make parents aware of the danger signs to look for if their teenager was using drugs.
[While the writer shares similarily the view that the better informed we are, the better the outcomes should be. The crux, and differential is about 'whose views' produces the better outcomes. The Policy debate has to move beyond scare tactics and towards informed consent at every level, Police, Parents and Young folk. In this regard the Manager's Guild needs to be more circumspect and ask, what part of what we are doing now is failing us... could it be that doing more of the same and expecting a different result is misplaced endevour?]

"Prevention is the key. It is 10 times harder to get someone to quit once they have started."
[undeserving of a comment]

Open communication between parents and teenagers about drug use was the best way to keep them safe.
[In this, there is uniform agreement.. so why do we abrogate that responsibility to Police?]

"Don't just say, `look don't do drugs because they are illegal', but actually give them reasons why.
[And do aproved drugs that are legal? Whaaa !]

"The best thing a parent can do is be knowledgeable of where these drugs can take their kids and convince their kids not to go down that path," Mr Anderson said.
[How about a Reality Based drug policy predicated on Safety First.]
Legally available and popular party pills were seen as the gateway to harder, more serious drug abuse.
[There is NO EVIDENCE to support this gateway 'theory'. There is evidence that emergence of and thus availability of party pills is a function of (primarily cannabis) prohibition, and evidence that such availability (of cannabis and perty pills) is an effective harm reduction strategy. ]
"Our theory would be that kids who might not have used drugs are now realising these party pills are legal, so it kind of suggests they should try it."
[So there is an agenda here... ALL the drugs WE dont like are Bad in ANY amount]

Mr Anderson said once the novelty of party pills wore off, young people could be seduced by a better hit.
[No wonder the 1998 House of Representatives Health Select Committee Inquiry was at pains to point out, the 'double standards' are an impediment to credible drug education and harm prevention. In order to establish an effective education policy in respect of ALL drugs, we first have to resolve the tensions that underpin what's broken in what we do today. The Manager's Guild adds little too our understanding and in the view of the writer is contributing to continuing policy failure, accordingly it is [partially] responsible for the mayhem that ensues.]
Blair Anderson,
Director, Educators for Sensible Drug Policy,
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