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Think of the children

More of this kind of discussion, please…

Children are Harmed, Not Helped, by Unwinnable Drug War by Daniel Robelo

After forty years and a trillion dollars, supporters of the drug war still claim that any discussion of legalization sends the “wrong message” to children.

The truth, as seen in news from Mexico ever day, is that the drug war itself is killing children. And the message we send by not discussing alternatives is one of cruel indifference. […]

Because the real “wrong message” is letting children die and communities be destroyed by refusing to put all options on the table.

Look, I am sick and tired of the crass and false “think of the children” arguments by the prohibitionists. I don’t want to go down their road, but it’s time we did a better job of showing that prohibitionists don’t really care about children, and that prohibition is harming children, not helping them.

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20 comments to Think of the children

  • Randy

    Prohibitionists only care about their own children staying away from drugs, no price is too high for someone ELSE to pay to achieve that goal. I’ve followed too many WOD threads these past few years to reach any other conclusion.

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .
    What kind of message does it send to the chilildrens if we legalize medicinal cannabis?

    That society cares more about keeping the sick from suffering any more than needed than about hysterical rhetoric and drug war dogma.

    I still haven’t found anyone that recalls getting a message from a politician when they were school children. Perhaps kids today watch C-span on Saturday mornings rather than animated cartoons and check the daily mail anxiously waiting for the latest issue of the Congressional Record. I guess that’s possible as I haven’t not paid attention to the habits of children for a number of years. Still, it seems far fetched to me.

    Did you realize that an alternative meaning of the word “congress” is sexual intercourse? Well it makes sense when we consider how Congress is always fucking the American people. I need to get a bumper sticker that says Ben Dover for Congress!
    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/congress

    • tensity1

      “Did you realize that an alternative meaning of the word “congress” is sexual intercourse? Well it makes sense when we consider how Congress is always fucking the American people. I need to get a bumper sticker that says Ben Dover for Congress!”

      Lol, I’ll be in line to slap one of those puppies on my car.

    • darkcycle

      Well, every morning my two-year-old starts with the New York Times, then moves on to the Wall Street Journal. Usually, he’ll stop and turn on CNN and get a fresh diaper before he gets to the Journal editorials, and that’s good, because the editorials always start a real tantrum. Then, after his cheerios and his tippy cup of milk he’ll turn on the computer and check the HuffPost ant Firedog lake, then look at the drug war news when he’s good and awake and ready to engage the world.
      ….uh, wait, that’s me.

  • DdC

    Ban Fossil Fools for the Sake of the Children huffing it!

    Child Protection Racket

    Hypocrisy & Double Standards
    Ashcroft Nephew Got Probation After Major Pot Bust
    Limbaugh Won’t Be Prosecuted
    Fair Deal for Noelle Bush
    The Devil Inside Jenna and George
    Cunningham’s Vote to Support the Death Penalty for Drugs
    Cunningham son held on marijuana charge (thread)
    CLAUDE SHELBY – SON OF U.S. SEN. RICHARD SHELBY (R-AL)
    DARLENE WATTS – SISTER OF U.S. REP. J.C. WATTS (R-OK)
    CINDY McCAIN – Wife of Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)
    DAN BURTON II – Son of U.S. Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN)
    Richard Riley, Jr., son of Education Secretary Richard Riley
    Gayle Rosten, daughter of then-U.S. House Ways and Means Committee chairman Dan Rostenkowski (D-IL)
    John Murtha, son of U.S. Rep. John Murtha (D-PA)
    Susan Gallo, daughter of U.S. Rep. Dean Gallo (R-NJ
    Warren Bachus, son of U.S. Rep Spencer Bachus (R-AL)
    Josef Hinchey, son of Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY)
    John C. Baker, the son of future Secretary of State James Baker III
    Bill Bendit’s Virtues
    Pot Grower, 75, Given Year in Jail
    US Prosecutes Cancer Patient Over Marijuana
    Tommy Chong Gets Nine Months
    Rainbow Farm Massacre
    The Murder of Peter McWilliams

    Think of the message being sent to the kids?
    How many more kids must we sacrifice before DEAth lies stop?
    The poisons eradicating the hemp, does more harm than smoking a bong, and removing hemp ditchweed doesn’t do a whole hellava lot for the kids finding cheap white powders profiting the same chemical and lab equipment supplies. continued

    Ganjawar Monger “DEAth” Cunningham Busted 4 Fraud

  • Common Science

    I’ve noticed over the years, a number of prohibitionist officials in various public capacities whose offspring became drug war statistics by completely ignoring their parents “professional” dire warnings on those other recreational substances.

    Yet I can’t think of a single offspring from all the old “heads” I was aquainted with, back in the day that ever became so reckless as to be put on L.E. databases.

    Just who is benefiting the children with the proper messages?

    • tintguy

      One of the people at one of those fine establishments that the system was so kind as to nudge me into (with the threat of prison time as the alternative) told me that I was a lying POS who would see his kids grow up to be in the same position as I was at the time. And here we are 12 years later with my 23 year old in the Navy and still not even drinking and the youngest about to graduate HS with honors and still hasn’t gone anywhere close to the roads I’ve traveled.

      Oh, and my evil deed that I was being called out on was setting up an unauthorized visit with my wife and kids while in residential treatment. Such a heinous crime against the good intentions of the Ones Who Know.lol
      Needless to say I didn’t stick around for that kind of treatment.

  • darkcycle

    Damn, Common Science, I never thought of it that way, but you’re pretty much right….
    It’s always the Preacher’s kid. Or the cop’s.

    • Peter

      Remember congressman randy duke cunningham, jailed for corruption?
      Here’s wikipedia on the sorry saga of his son:
      In September 1996 Cunningham criticized President Clinton for appointing judges who were “soft on crime”. “We must get tough on drug dealers,” he said, adding that “those who peddle destruction on our children must pay dearly.”[21] He favored stiff drug penalties[22] and voted for the death penalty for major drug dealers.[23]
      Four months later, his son Todd was arrested for helping to transport 400 pounds (181 kg) of marijuana from Massachusetts to California. Todd Cunningham pleaded guilty to possession and conspiracy to sell marijuana.[24] At his son’s sentencing hearing, Cunningham fought back tears as he begged the judge for leniency (Todd was sentenced to two and a half years in prison, in part because he tested positive for cocaine three times while on bail).[23] Cunningham’s press secretary responded to accusations of double standards with: “The sentence Todd got had nothing to do with who Duke is. Duke has always been tough on drugs and remains tough on drugs.”[22]

  • Common Science

    Although Darkcycle, short of joining the Sybonese Liberation Army, they rarely obtain a permanent record, nevermind the remotest chance of an encounter with a Federal terrorist outfit such as SWAT or the DEA.

  • yang

    I doubt children really read law that much so I’m pretty sure that currently prohibition isn’t sending any kind of message to them and neither would legalization.

  • ezrydn

    The idea of “save the children” is nothing more than a “P-L-O-Y!” I’ve honestly never heard or saw a Prohibitionist who ever struck me as caring one iota about “the children.” Do the SWAT team members care? Obviously not. Do politicians care? Have they ever, EVER put any foundation to that call? NOPE! Does the Government make it harder or easier for kids to get drugs? Kids get drugs EASIER than they get legal commodities that they’re not allowed to have. Ask’em!

    So, “What About The Children” is simply a “red herring” to get one side-tracked. Nothing more.

    On the other hand, REFORM CARES! Who’s pushing for “Legalize, Regulate & Control?” Reformers! WHY? Simple, to give kids the drug protection benefits that are wrapped around other deadly drugs, namely, alcohol and nicotine. However, Big Macho Prohibitionists say NO!

    Prohibitionists have the blood of US kids on their hands just as Mexican Drug Cartels have the blood of Mexican children on their hands.

    They’re your kids! You want to listen to THEM or US?

  • Servetus

    Prohibitionists know the parental instincts for protecting children are among the strongest motivators on the planet.

    Parental behavior is deeply seated in the more primitive areas of the brain. Parental thought processes at that level can be inherently irrational and driven by pure emotion. The ‘parent-button’ can be pushed by any number of fake premises that cry wolf, which prohibitionists are all too happy to supply.

    Cerebral thinking is needed to overcome phony ‘think-of-the-children’ propaganda. But since sane, critical, cerebral thinking is strongly discouraged by our government, as well as by our public school systems, many problems remain.

    On the plus side, kids genuinely appreciate openness and honesty, and they really enjoy freedom. Some of the latest work done in evolutionary psychology [Steven Pinker, et al.] indicates that less than half of human behavior originates biologically, less than half originates from peer influence, and only about 5-percent comes from parents. What that implies is that paternalistic theories such as ‘latch-key kids’, drug free worlds, and so-forth, are dead in the water.

    Parental figures need to understand their 5-percent influence doesn’t mean squat in the overall scheme of things.

    The tiny 5-percent of influence, which can often decrease with increasing authoritarianism, means their kids will probably experiment with drugs someday, regardless of how great a parent they think they might be. Anticipating that event, the best safety net is a safe society dedicated to a truthful education about drugs and implementing harm reduction strategies as a pre-emptive measure for foreseeable problems.

  • vicky vampire

    Look its an old cliche story has old has time itself, you now the old joke the sheriff’s kids are breaking the laws and rules too and are druggies and spoiled troubles makers, like the preachers kids who rebel and does very naughty stuff. please.
    I went on trip from Utah over to Nevada noticed young and older adults breaking all sorts of driving laws like texting while driving,crossing in and out of double line in HOV lane, smoking in no smoking areas please theses adults were kids just about 10 or fifteen years ago so many laws they are ignoring and you think they are going to not break drug laws people you are dreaming, so many young and older adults already break a plethora of silly rules and laws yeah some are for your safety but to many folks never enough to catch them all. For the children,the kiddies are not listening.

  • when my kids were little (they’re both over 18 now) I never smoked herb in front of them… I always made them turn around. I mean really, if they were ever asked if their dad smoked in front of them they could honestly say “no.”

    In all the concerts I’ve worked as a rock medicine volunteer the substance most abused to the point of endangerment is/was alcohol. Yeah, we’d get the occasional shroomer that needed hand holding whilst guided back to and thru happyland, but rarely did we have TOCs (tripper out of control) who couldn’t be made happy within a few minutes. Never in nearly 15 years of keeping the public safe have I dealt with a teen “marijuana overdose.”

    My kids grew up watching me (and my fellow RockMed types) work with people having substance issues – they know they don’t wanna go there and that on some things, father really does know best. I’ve stuck to my line – booze and white powders suck – their whole lives. They’ve seen the results of drunk driving, they’ve ridden the public transit system w/ tweakers and drunks and folks on-the-nod and they’ve made up their own minds (which is an important illusion to kids) that they don’ wanna go there.

    Kids can handle the truth, in fact comes a certain age and they need the truth. I suspect the problem of the strictest and/or straightest parents having the kids that get in the most trouble stems from the big “Hypocrite” stamped on the parental unit foreheads, ’cause kids smell hypocrisy from a mile away and respond negatively.

    Of course the fact we own the wwweb has aided the children in finding the truth about drugs.

    And I praise the lord (can I have a hallelujah!) that my kids didn’t have DARE classes because my presence in class (and I would have been in those DARE classes) on that topic would have mortified them… “D A D…”

  • Richie

    Pete said: “Look, I am sick and tired of the crass and false “think of the children” arguments by the prohibitionists. I don’t want to go down their road, but it’s time we did a better job of showing that prohibitionists don’t really care about children, and that prohibition is harming children, not helping them.”

    So in effect, you do support making “think of the children” arguments. Yes, why cede this territory to brutal drug warriors? More reformers need to move beyond just libertarian arguments and pot fests. We are individuals that live in communities, not on islands by ourselves, and God forbid we ever try to reach out to parents, rather than just their kids in college.

    • I would point out that your statement “God forbid we ever try to reach out to parents, rather than just their kids in college” is erroneous. I suspect the majority of active folks do deal more with adults than teens and young twenty-somethings.

      You’re right tho’ that “[m]ore reformers need to move beyond just libertarian arguments and pot fests.” We have a presidential election coming up. The time has never been more ripe and momentum towards drug policy reform never stronger. I think one relevant question is how do we make ourselves heard? How do we get our best and brightest that mass exposure for them to present an eloquent and concise statement against drugs prohibition? And how do we involve those silent smot pokers that vote?

      • Richie

        “I would point out that your statement ‘God forbid we ever try to reach out to parents, rather than just their kids in college’ is erroneous. I suspect the majority of active folks do deal more with adults than teens and young twenty-somethings.”

        I’m talking about reaching out to parents, not just adults in general. I don’t see any messaging that appeals overwhelmingly to parents. I promise you that having ten respectable-looking parents protesting outside a politician’s office for marijuana policy reform (with focus on parent issues) will get more serious and widespread attention than 200 youth protesting at a NORML rally on a college campus. Don’t believe, then try it as an experiment. Why prohibitionists use the “think of the children” argument? Parents tend to be very busy people and that is the one argument that gets their attention. There is absolutely no reason why we shouldn’t be using that argument to address the concerns on our side of the drug policy issue.

      • well… me being here in Oregon I’d immediately turn you on to Sandee Burbank and MAMA: http://www.mamas.org/ Sandee very much deals w/ parents.

        And perhaps the case of Cashy Hyde is the perfect approach to that elusive amd ignored group of parents of which you speak…

        I’m just leery of critics. “We” all do what we do and any form of a cohesive ‘we” is elusive. Complaining that others’ focus is not the same as our own is kinda pointless. I don’t rag on others because not enough people write LTEs even tho’ I believe it’s one of the most effective means to be heard in our (and other folks’) communities… there are a thousand facets to this drug war jewel. Pick one. Heck, pick two or three… there are plenty to go around.

        And I’m sorry Richie, you won’t catch me at a NORML rally on a campus anywhere. There are professional established bureaucracies on both sides of the WOD aisle… and I’d give my money to MAP and LEAP, if I had any to give away.