The War on Drugs

April 6, 2013 Wisconsin Public Television Leave a Comment

Watch Independent Lens “The House I Live In” at 9 p.m. Monday, April 8 on Wisconsin Public Television.

House I Live InAnytime someone mentions a ‘war on drugs,’ all I can think of is going through the DARE program. Then I start to remember how young the program began and how by and large, it did absolutely nothing to deter kids from trying drugs and alcohol years later. By the time I made it to high-school, there were already college students coming to visit to interview us on if we thought the program was effective or not.

You would think that more research and brain storming would have gone into such a large scale project targeted at America’s youth with the intention of winning a war that had been waging for decades. Almost seems like the idea of DARE was thought up one day, shared with a select group who thought it was a good call, then fast-tracked into elementary schools across the country. Yet despite so many kids going through the program year after year, the drug problem in America still hasn’t improved.

Other countries have actually seen the biggest improvements in drug problems and drug-related violence by legalizing their use. Now obviously this has just improved the problem, not solved it – and chances are the U.S. is never going to go this route. So I guess the real question is: can this war even be won?

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