Drug Abuse Resistance Education, or as it is commonly known, DARE, is an organization of police officers and civilian volunteers that is in our 5th grade classrooms every school year. DARE focuses on educating fifth graders on the dangers of drugs in our society, how to say no to drugs, and how to handle themselves in these high pressure situations. The people involved in the DARE program are dedicated police officers and citizens who deeply believe in their cause.
That being said, lets focus on the program itself. The program addresses all drugs, including tobacco, alcohol, prescription pills, narcotics, and inhalants. They tell children of the 450,000 deaths each year from tobacco. The 250,000 deaths a year from alcohol. (although these numbers that they speak of don't always match what NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse) releases). They tell children how dangerous marijuana and cocaine are. How heroin and meth are killers. They classify all these drugs the same.
When children then get to middle school and high school, they are thought to have a fear of drugs instilled in them. The problem is, children see their parents drink and smoke cigarettes all the time, they know our society has accepted these drugs as tolerable. They also see constant commercials for prescription drugs and are taught that doctors should be trusted, so they think prescription pills are okay as well. Then they encounter someone in middle or high school who smokes marijuana. 65% of our children have admitted to trying marijuana, the actual number likely being closer to 80%.
They try marijuana and realize that the terrible things they have been told about it all those years are just not true. They don't get violent, they don't steal for it, and they were told it was going to be that way. Now our children realize they have been lied to. Then they begin to think, well, if they lied to me about marijuana, then the cocaine and heroin and meth must be okay too!
This is a dangerous cycle. Marijuana is likely the safest substance on the planet in terms of overdose possibility. You can overdose on water. You can overdose on over the counter medicines. You can overdose on heroin, cocaine, and meth. You CANNOT overdose on marijuana. The concentration of Delta-9 Tetrahydrocannibinol (THC) in your system to kill you cannot be measured. In fact, high concentrations of THC have been know to cure cancer and many other human ailments. 14 states and Washington D.C. have medical marijuana laws enacted.
Children see these contradictions and learn that they cannot trust authority. Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) is a group of former and current law enforcement personnel with citizen support that believes that the dangers of prohibition of drugs far outweigh the dangers of the drugs themselves. Hundreds of thousands are killed or injured each year by violence associated with prohibition than the mere 17,000 people who die from overdose of narcotics. ALL NARCOTICS COMBINED. Visit the LEAP website (www.leap.cc) and see what the people on the front lines of the drug war have to say about how prohibition affects your civil rights. Learn the truth about marijuana and other drugs.