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Trust your kids? Screw THAT action.

There's a reason I don't frequent Blogging Baby much lately.

I've linked to a post about random drug testing in school for anyone ATTENDING extracurricular activies.

The idea of random drug testing irritates and insults me to no end. But what REALLY gets on my nerves is that people think it's "A-OK" to test anyone, because really, "kid's safety" is paramount.

How exactly does testing a kid who showed up to watch a ballgame helping keep him safe? If they decide next year that they want to test all female students for pregnancy, or all male students for the clap, will that be ok?

Why is this ok? Someone mentioned that they'd rather their pilots, teachers, everyone be tested because it's "safer"

Ever watch American Beauty? I can't help but think that's occuring more often than not. It's not hard to fool a drug test, and it's also not hard to have a false positive. It's insulting and demeaning to anyone, teenager or adult, to have this occuring.

You want to make sure kids don't do drugs, or adults for that matter? INVEST time and energy in people. Get involved with their lives-the few years where I had what could be termed a drug "problem" NO ONE was paying any attention to me, not my father, not my teachers, no one. If anyone noticed, they just wanted me out of their hair so they wouldn't have to deal with the potential fallout.

No one stopped to help me. And if I had been tested, I would have likely been busted, and what would have happened? I would have been expelled, and likely, little else. I stopped using drugs because I didn't need them anymore, and I saw with my own two eyes what could happen.

But some kids aren't that lucky. And what will they do with some kid who maybe smoked half a joint on a whim? Throw him in jail? Expel them? Beat them with sticks because they aren't perfect?

People talk about being "sick" of touchy feely ways of dealing with drugs etc. Would these same people consider beating their kids a way of not being more "touchy feely"? Would they leave them to cry in their cribs because "they've had enough attention for their problem"?

If you do not attack the core REASON for why a kid wants to do drugs, and I mean REALLY do drugs, not a few bowls at a party, you will not win. PERIOD. The "War on Drugs" in the US is pretty zero tolerance, and what has it done? It filled up your jails, and now drugs like meth are everywhere, because people will ALWAYS find a way to fill a need. And there is obviously a need. If getting "tough" on drugs worked, hell, y'all in the states wouldn't have ANY problems.

But you DO. In spades. And instead of stepping back and taking a hard look at what doesn't work and what does, you lash out and start treating people like rats in a cage. Not as trustworthy human beings. It's like walking into a Wal-Mart with 60 cameras, greeters, people from loss prevention walking behind you. Instead of assuming that you are innocent, they assume you will eventually do something wrong. Instead of treating you with respect, you're treating like something under someone's shoes.

And sure, the odd time, an adult will have an addiction. But do you think those tests are there to protect you? Nu-uh-they're there to protect the company, plain and simple. Who wants to deal with a pesky rehab if we can just fire the dude and wash our hands of it. Which just plays into a cycle that fixes nothing.

Seek and destroy isn't working for drugs anymore than it's working for war right now. When I was using a lot, I wanted someone to be there for me, and no one was. If my father would have then tested me and punished me, it would have done nothing but push me farther into the arms of the drugs I loved so much at that point.

Don't your kids deserve better than that? Don't they deserve thinking, feeling parents, instead of blind automatons who will let themselves be led by people claiming to look out for them and their children?

My children, and their privacy and self respect are worth FAR more than that.

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Oy, I don't comment on BB very much anymore either, but this issue really chapped my ass.

The short answer is: no effing way.
I'll be goddamned if my child will ever be drug tested without cause.

The long answer is that drug testing does nothing to prevent drug use. Time and education, sure, but...well, to be honest here in the US of A we seem to be pretty down on critical thought and decision making as an educational necessity.
Blanket drug testing sounds about as good an idea as teaching to the test a la No Child Left Behind.

Jen
What's Your Name Mommy

You are so absolutely right. That kind of thinking is not only demeaning to people; it accomplishes nothing except, like you said, to expel a kid who needs help and somebody to care about what is going on in their lives more than anything. That kind of random drug testing seems like a violation of human rights to me. If I was a teenager at that ball game, I would leave rather than be subjected to the insult and the implication (and I didn't do drugs, but that's beside the point).
The best anti-drug campaign we had was sitting in on an hour-long talk with a guy who was giving talks at high schools as part of his parole. He had been really hard-core into drugs, both selling and doing them, and gang involvement with the Hell's Angels, etc. The stories he told us chilled me. Everytime it would have been so easy to just try it, I always remembered him. I don't know if it worked for all those other kids in the room but it sure worked for me! He just said, "There are other ways to deal with your problems. Don't go down that road." Anyway, I don't mean to preach to the choir - since we already agree. I liked your take on this.

I'm still making noise on BB just to combat the idiots.

I was just too tired and still sick the other day to write as much as I wanted about solutions.

I would have said about what you just did.

You make a lot of sense (as usual!)and it's much more interesting to read the view of someone who has been there...

for what it's worth, I'd never heard of Blogging Baby but from past experience with email mothers' groups I can guess the context!

When you approach social problems like this with a masculine perspective it ends up being all about crime and punishment. That's the problem here in the US.

When you approach social problems with a feminine perspective you start to see that people who do this have needs that aren't being met.

This is the real problem in America: we don't have enough women leaders. I mean, you could use this same analogy to talk about abortion, or just about any other social problem. Search and destroy is the masculine answer; help meet their individual needs is the feminine answer.

It's not like I was snorting coke or anything, but I had about 2-3 years disappear.

We're they fun? Hell YES. BUT, I saw what was inevitable-that I would eventually try something harder, or would take one too many hits of acid, and wig out, or get myself killed. I put myself in a few comprimising places, and likely could have been hurt. I blacked out a few times in the company of many men.

it scares me that I don't remember those nights.

If beating shit out of people worked, if jail time or punishment worked, why would the drug problems be increasing?

Kids turn to drugs because they have issues they can't/won't deal with, or they're bored. So let's make sure they can't attend any functions, cause that will make it better.

More than a male/female dichotomy, I think it has a lot to do with some misplaced sense of "honour" that people have. No one wants to back down, no one TRULY wants to fix a situation. Look at people who regularily spank their children-we all know it-it's EASIER than thinking about a solution, and for awhile, it works.

However, it backfires eventually.

More than anything, I am increasingly sick and TIRED of the implied message of "in the old days"

WTF was so good then? The pretty mind pictures you have of the good old days are likely fiction. There were no good old days.

And I'm tired of people pretending that teenagers are moronic idiots. Kids, teenagers, PEOPLE have as many brains as you give them credit for.

And they wonder why more and more teenagers are killing other people. I can sorta see why-if they aren't considered people, why should they consider others?

Argh-I'm rambling now...

I was going to come up with a similar parent/child analogy.

It's all about the short term solution trumping the long term one. Oh sure, the short term solution is a hell of a lot cheaper in the beginning but damn does it get awfully expensive down the road.

Any child from a controlling parent situation could tell you that control doesn't work. Education and respect does, though it's not without its own glitches.

Crazy shit.

I do still post on BB, but I have no idea why. To annoy a few people, perhaps? :)

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