D.A.R.E. America is Obsolete

Schools in the US are getting real about drug education by focusing on harm reduction while abandoning prohibitionist approaches that fail to work, such as the D.A.R.E. America (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) program created in Los Angeles in 1983 by the infamous LAPD chief Daryl Gates. Gates is better remembered for proclaiming before a US Senate Subcommittee that infrequent or casual drug users “ought to be taken out and shot” because “we’re in a war” and even casual drug use is “treason.”

In its application, D.A.R.E.’s ridiculously inaccurate anti-drug hype served to make many students more curious (and thereby allegedly “treasonous”) when they experimented with drugs they might never have heard of before D.A.R.E. visited their classrooms. Harm reduction education can avoid these problems:

Instead of “just say no” propaganda, harm reduction reduces risks by helping people make the healthiest choices based on evidence-based research, without judgement. […]

…scare tactics have been replaced with useful facts about how drugs work and why the government made some of them illegal (hint: the history of drug prohibition is steeped in racism and classism) […]

With Safety First, students learn about different marijuana products, from raw buds to concentrates and edibles, along with their effects on the mind and body…in the harm reduction section of the unit, students learn that the best way to avoid these potential harms is abstinence — choosing not to use marijuana. However, Safety First recognizes some teenagers will make a different choice. So, students learn the difference between smoking marijuana and consuming edibles. […]

Drug-use safety tips have typically been available from a person’s drug-consuming peers—not organizations like D.A.R.E. Drug war critics have endorsed policies like those of Safety First for decades, only to be rebuffed by politicians and prohibitionists who apparently want the use of illicit drugs to remain potentially harmful. Drugs made less harmful, or those already benign, do little to support the existence or need of specialized drug enforcement personnel. Nor do they help generate politicians like presidential candidate Joe Biden, who’s ridden a wave of public anti-drug hysteria and violence throughout his 46-year political career to gain political stardom.

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11 Responses to D.A.R.E. America is Obsolete

  1. Lance Garfield says:

    Did you just wake up from the 1990s?

    • Daniel Williams says:

      Exactly my thoughts.

    • WalStMonky says:


      VP Biden certainly makes me think about the 1990s.

      For the last couple of years from time to time I marvel at how the sycophants of prohibition haven’t moved their argument even a millimeter since the 1990s. I’ve mentioned the fact that they’re stuck in the 1990s as one of the most significant parts moving cannabis law reform forward.

      But something that’s completely changed from the 1990s is that the only people paying any attention to the sycophants of prohibition are themselves…preaching to the choir. Back in the 1990s it was the total reverse. In 1990 an ACLU lawyer told me some religion in drug rehab would be good for me. Nowadays 3 Federal circuit appeals courts have ruled that forced 12 stepping is a violation of the 1st Amendment Establishment clause. So I certainly am not confusing the two just because today has me thinking about those days.

      With specific toward DARE…I’m too old…never had to sit still for that nonsense. As a result it was years before it struck me that it was the origination of the mindless arguments in favor of prohibition that the prohibitionists regurgitate on cue.

  2. HOHO says:

    D.A.R.E. America is Obsolete

    And Morrison’s penis is NOT obscene… the hippies are coming back to bite ya Daryl, haha!

  3. Jesus says:

    Students should learn to discern Guatemalan ditch weed from Nepali temple balls.

  4. kaptinemo says:

    As a student in junior high school in the early 1970’s, we had drug education. But it wasn’t crazy, hyped or inaccurate. Each lesson was divided by the type of substance, with details about its effects and dangers.

    That. Was. It.

    No moralizing. No BS scares about men growing boobs for smoking cannabis. As the patron saint of the prohibs, the fictional ‘Joe Friday’ from the TV series Dragnet would say, “Just the facts, ma’am, just the facts” And that’s what I got.

    And because of that, and my own parents’ demystifying alcohol with the demand that we drink at home first to learn our limits, I had no interest in illicit substances. The ‘forbidden fruit’s pretty, seductively inviting wrapper was ripped away to reveal something…boring.

    I also hate to say this, but members of my generation should’ve have done what my parents did with us kids. Far too many of us didn’t, and left that uncomfortable chore (to cowardly avoid being asked such questions as “Did you ever smoke merry-wanna, daddy?”) to mercs (police) who had plenty of financial incentives to lie. And DARE was the perfect example of that.

  5. strayan says:

    Here’s what Australian authoritarians look like folks


    This was in response to a discovery that police have been strip searching minors https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/nov/06/revealed-nsw-police-strip-searched-more-than-100-girls-including-12-year-olds

  6. DdC says:

    Fucking brainiac…
    More Tails Wagging Dogs

    Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump Nov 5
    This is the time for Mexico, with the help of the United States, to wage WAR on the drug cartels and wipe them off the face of the earth. We merely await a call from your great new president!
    Replying to @realDonaldTrump

    Long-Term Pot Smoking Doesn’t Seem to Harm Health: Study
    Even after years of heavy use, marijuana doesn’t seem to have much of an impact on the physical health of the body.

    @DrPhil bites the dust jpg

    * not a licensed psychologist
    * became famous by Oprah
    * he cannot prescribe medicine.
    * Dr. Phil is NOT a real doctor.

    Another eat up in dumb ass.
    Health services getting info from drug trafficking program and get this.
    It’s fairly negative.

    Samantha J. Gross @samanthajgross
    The FL House Health + Human Services Committee is hearing a presentation on recreational marijuana from Chris Gibson, director of the Oregon-Idaho drug trafficking program

    It’s fairly negative, similar to presentation in Oct. by Harvard biologist who warned of marijuana dangers

    Scientists racing to create lab-grown synthetic cannabinoids,
    but cannabis plant not obsolete just yet

    A slew of large licensed producers have already started investing in synthetic and biosynthetic cannabinoid companies

    black-market competitors thrive
    on over regulation and greedy taxes.

    Cannabis NB blames lack of profit
    on illegal, black-market competitors

    Cannabis NB says it is aware of at least 50 illegal cannabis sales operations, more than double the 20 legal Cannabis NB stores.

  7. primus says:

    Re: New Brunswick cannabis corporation losing money; they set their prices too high originally and the black market simply undercut them. They then went to their suppliers and negotiated lower wholesale prices, lowered their retail prices and expected buyers to swarm them. That did not happen, and the politicians do not understand why. Of course, the black market will have simply lowered their prices and out-competed the government stores. Who but anyone could have predicted this? To reduce the black market the only way is to out-compete it. Lowering prices to a level where the black market does not make a profit is the only way. Too bad so many politicians have never owned a successful retail business or they would automatically know this, but with most of them being lawyers etc. with humanities degrees and no business experience, this cannot happen. Perhaps they should ask Walmart how it became dominant in the retailing of almost everything. A clerk at Wally World could have told them how to avoid this mess. These politicians are incompetent.

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