Just saying yes?

Lyon Keating:

Interesting to see that data is supporting that the war on drugs is actually helping drug use and drug lords operate easier and an unwinable battle.  Maybe drugs should be legal?  Perhaps that could solve many of our problems associated with addiction by individuals for drugs and in the long run make people just not really want to do drugs in general.  Is battling and coming to terms with addiction through experimenting with drugs and learning rehabilitation strategies actually more effective than just being told not to do something and lured by something that seems appealing?  I mean people as individuals are the ones taking drugs right?  If we truly have confidence in people shouldn’t we believe that if given the right resources they can fight their own problems?  ‘Just saying no’ doesn’t work when you deal with a whole lot of people that are curious and rebellious especially.  Hmmmm…  I mean doing what countries and governments are doing now seems to be self defeating right?



I think you are assuming a pretty simplistic paradigm for human behaviour.  Not everyone does things just to rebel against an authority.  Teenagers do sometimes behave this way, but if you take away drugs-as-rebellion, then they will find something else horrible to do. The same thing applies for those adults who still operate on that level.  For most adults, though, the use — or continued use — of drugs is a whole different story.

I agree that the “War” on drugs is a fiasco.  Nobody who thinks seriously about the subject thinks that locking up almost a million people in prisons for drug offenses is a sane policy.  But beware of the Law of Unintended Consequences!!!  Countries/localities which have played with complete de-criminalization have not liked the results. Granted, some of those negative results have derived from the continued illegality (such as drug-mafia suppliers), but there have also been periphery unforeseen consequences.


Lyon Keating:

Oh damn that law of unintended consequences.  That’s sort of life in general isn’t it.  Well, the war on drugs and just saying no are campaigns that seem incredibly flawed and really not working.  What would happen if people said yes and we declared a war on the affects of drugs?  A campaign modeled after rehab.

People use drugs because they are fun, they bring good feelings into your life when you normally don’t have any, they offer an opportunity for rebellion, they offer a different perspective that is looked upon as fake but again so real because you are experiencing it.  Drug use in excess is bad, they will inevitably rot your brain or other organs and easily could destroy other great parts of your life if used too much, and really are an, at times useful, but ultimately artificial way of figuring out things in life.  Perhaps if people delved into it more to see what all the hub bub was about, and if when caught or reached a low regarding their use they had legitimite options for finding pathways out to realize that drug use wasn’t the answer, then I believe that would be a war on drugs morso than any war on drugs actions that have been put into affect yet.  Drugs will always be smuggled in and flourish within black markets or within established governments and completely eradicating them is not something that is going to happen.

Let’s see what unintended consequences we can muster up here in order to deal with them as they come, eh?



Money.  “Just Say No” works for some kids, so it is worth keeping around.  Same with random drug testing for teams. But they obviously don’t work for a LOT of kids.  But what REALLY doesn’t work, for either the drug user or society, is incarceration for drug offenses.  California actually DOES have a re-hab model for first offenders, so that’s a start. But re-hab costs MONEY . . . LOTS of money!!!  And most people can’t get past the punishment model and consider re-hab to be “coddling” criminals.  You, on the other hand, are using logic . . . haven’t you learned yet?????


Lyon Keating:

Yeah I suppose I missed that along with grammar in the 8th grade.  That damn logic education we were given by that hippie about Locke and Calvin and Hobbes or something like that:)…Stupid brain for allowing me to go logical.

I’ve always heard in criminal justice classes I took in college and whatnot that it costs way more to incarcerate a criminal in prison (like 30K or something like that) than to put an individual through some sort of rehab program.  Especially when the rehab is something as minor as drug related…I mean post traumatic stress disorder or something of the sort might have rehab programs that do in fact cost mucho and are very specific.  However, I do think that you are right when you claim that people will never be able to get over the whole, “rehab is hippie and coddling criminals” thing.

Why be so cut-throut?  Will the iron fist mentality always rule over the “rehab program and educate mentality?”  Or is it that the people who rule with the rehab mentality don’t want to lower their standards to ruling others with a iron fist mentality and as is their nature they aren’t confrontational about it?  In the end and inevitably, the ideas and mentalities of the iron fisters win out because they are confrontational, demanding and don’t give ultimatums?  Do liberals just need to be more aggressive with their ideas?…….Uhhhh so confusing.



Well, there’s re-hab, and then there’s re-hab.  For kids or casual users, NA-type meetings once a week with a trained leader are pretty cheap.  For serious, long-term users with deeper issues, in-patient therapeutic re-habilitation is a more expensive proposition.  So first-time offenders getting re-hab programs makes a LOT of sense.  For people who are now re-offending, especially because they are often linked with other crimes, the situation gets more complicated (especially since it didn’t work the first time). And I’ve always wondered about those price comparisons . . . like, who does them and how are they tabulated.  For instance, if they are just dividing the costs of the prison system by the number of inmates, they are including VERY expensive high-security prisoners in the numbers.  But whatever . . . your original contention that what we have is CERTAINLY not working cannot be argued with!!!!

And sorry about that logic thing.  Should’ve spent more time on grammar, I guess.


Lyon Keating:

Yeah we’re all sort of at the whim at the whole numbers and statistics games that are spouted out at random for us to believe in.  Unless you’re doing it yourself and know what fully goes into it then it’s sort of a guessing game on if you are going to believe it or not.

No you shouldn’t have spent more time on grammar.  I get into arguments all the time with people who feel that grammar/structural writing is far more important than developing free thinking, critical thought ideas and I swear I look at them like they have two ridiculous ugly heads.  I mean I get it sort of.  You need people to be able to understand each other in order to even be able to express those creative, good ideas, but c’mon!, I’m not saying get rid of it completely or not establish a somewhat structural approach.  I’m just saying you’re giving up a whole lot more than you really think if you teach structure over ideas.



The problem with statistics is only partially with the people who tabulate them.  As consumers of information, WE tend to believe the statistics that support our own views and to discount or totally discard statistics that don’t support what we already believe.

Yeah, I used to get into those arguments all the time, too.  But I also had long moments of self-doubt as to whether I was doing things right by the kids or just doing with I liked. Early in my career, I used to get feedback from the kids who went to the Catholic high schools that they wished they had had more grammar.  But then my own kids, who HAD had all that grammar, went, and they did no better.  At some point, that grammar is necessary; but it has no context if the kids have nothing to write about or cannot express their ideas in sentences complex enough to actually NEED the grammar.  So I finally settled into believing that they DID need the grammar, but that all their other English teachers would kill them with it anyway, whether I did it or not.  AND, I do believe that the place for all that is in high school because kids retain almost NONE of it when you do it in elementary or middle school (except for real basics like noun-verb agreement and homonym usage).


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