By continuing the attitude of condemnation of drug users and drugs, those who do so are actively encouraging rebellious people to try drugs, particularly teenagers. In our effort to reduce the use and harms of drugs, drug use and drug abuse, it is necessary to remove, as much as possible, the stigma of drugs and drug users.
Reaching Out to Those Who Want Help
By reducing or eradicating the bitter condemnation some people pronounce on drug users, this will also help people who want help, but who are not inclined to seek it due to overly harsh penalties and holier-than-thou tongue lashings. Drug Prohibition itself is a government imposed religious condemnation, thus the need to end it.
“I Did Drugs to Rebel”
I’ve heard from various former drug addicts on the Internet and some of them indicate they were rebellious teenagers who tried drugs to spite their parents and authority figures. However, some of them seem blind to the obvious correlation that they only did drugs because they are illegal and knew it would anger authority figures.
If someone told them that wearing a baseball cap backwards was the worst thing they could do and drugs were perfectly normal, what do you think they would do? They’d wear baseball caps every day, and backwards! They’d wear their baseball caps indoors at the dinner table, they’d even do outlandish things like wearing it in the shower or wearing it to bed, just to get your goat.
However, not every teenager is hellbent on pissing everyone off. Many teenagers are perfectly willing to listen to others’ experiences and learn from them. Of course, to an extent it depends on how the experiences are related. As I’ve written elsewhere, it’s important to talk straight and not engage in fear-mongering, otherwise you are leading them into temptation to test your claims, and potentially loose a lot of respect for you and trust in what you say. This is partly why the Drug Warrior Perjurers are derided so much by so many, and anyone with any sense laughs at the notion of a drug free america or world.
If you are sincere in lowering the rates of newcomers trying out drugs for fun or to irritate authority figures you should follow the above advice. Please also see these important pages.
In the Advice section are two lists by Dr. Joel Hochman. On one page you can find his advice for parents and his advice for "Would-Be Overdose Victims," and on another page you can find the video of him reading them. Dr. Joel Hochman is the Executive Director of the National Foundation for the Treatment of Pain.
You should also read Chapter 44 of Licit & Illicit Drugs, entitled ‘How to Launch a Drug Menace,’ but is more appropriately titled ‘Prohibitionists [Journalists and Drug Warrior-types] Launch a Drug Menace.’ It parallels what is happening now with Prohibition as a whole.