Adolescent Drug Abuse Essay, Research Paper
One of the largest jobs in society today is adolescent drug maltreatment. After a
dramatic bead in the usage of illicit drugs among teens throughout the 80 s, one time once more adolescent drug
usage is on the rise at a unsafe rate and shows no marks of decelerating down. In 1979 more than
16 per centum of kids between the ages of 12-17, used drugs harmonizing to the Drug Enforcement
Administration. Under the streamer of the Just Say No motto, Presidents Reagan and Bush
helped drive this figure down to a depression of 5.3 per centum in 1992, but it has crept back up to 10
per centum today ( Drug Use Back Up for Youth, 1 ) . From 1991 to 1994 8th graders who said
they had used marihuana in the old twelvemonth doubled to 13 per centum. In the same clip part,
marihuana usage increased 66 per centum among tenth graders every bit good as a 44 percent addition among
12th graders. Marijuana has by far, been the most popular drug used by teens every bit good as all
Americans in the past decennary. However, there is a new coevals of drugs that is merely get downing
to consequence the states young person. Ecstasy, or MDMA, belongs to a household of drugs called
entactogens, which literally means touching within. It creates a sense of euphory for the user
and enhances feelings of empathy, emotional heat, and self credence. Besides utmost liver
and encephalon harm, the effects of rapture are yet to be discovered since the drug is so new.
Recently, a new mock rapture pill has been go arounding which creates the same euphoric feelings of
existent MDMA but is much cheaper to fabricate. These pills have been found to incorporate PMA,
velocity, DXM, and PCP. Deaths have already been reported from heat hyperpyrexia as a consequence of taking
this mock pill ( What Is Ecstasy, 2 ) . Among other drugs that are presently on the rise are cocaine,
inhalants, ciggerettes, and intoxicant.
The adolescents of our state are our hereafter. If this coevals of teens continue
turning up in an environment where drugs are everyplace and they are non having the proper
drug instruction they will accept drug usage as a proper manner of life which will ensue in atrocious
effects. We must make what we can to acquire the message across that drug usage will greatly
harm your organic structure and head. On an even scarier note, scientists and physicians have yet to detect
the harmful effects that certain drugs have on an person. In 20 old ages, physicians may denote
that those who have used rapture in the yesteryear, are guaranteed to develop encephalon tumours. This is a
worst instance scenario, but it is certainly a world. Drug usage is a direct misdemeanor of the social ends
of good wellness, personal safety, and economic chance. Its is imperative that this issue be
addressed every bit shortly as possible before younger kids are effected. By disregarding the immense job
that is gazing this state right in the face we are seting today s kids, our kids s kids
and so forth at hazard.
There are several causes for the increased figure of adolescent drug users in the state.
The Clinton Administration portions some of the incrimination for increased maltreatment. By cut downing drug
enforcement places, cut downing drug persecutions, cut downing international anti-drug plans and
express joying when he told an MTV audience that he didn t inhale he was non directing out a really
positive message to the states young person ( Bauer, 2 ) . The fact that many parents have trouble
nearing their kids about drugs does non assist either particularly since most of today s
parents, kids from the 60 s and 70 s, have admitted to drug usage themselves. The biggest
job seems to be the deficiency of efficiency in America s drug instruction plan. My proposed
policy is to publish a compulsory drug instruction class for all pupils in 8th through 12th class
which will be run by net income free drug instruction organisations ( for illustration, Teen Outreach,
Students for a Drug Free America, PRIDE, etc. ) taught by immature grownups who were one time adolescent
drug users themselves. This class will besides necessitate a trip to a drug rehabilitation centre once a
twelvemonth where pupils can see the true harm that drug maltreatment can hold on 1s life. The thought that
this class will be taught by existent people and non police officers will heighten the thought that drug
dependence can go on to anyone and will forestall pupils from experiencing inadequate. This will
guarantee the updated instruction of adolescents at a clip in their life where they are most confronted
The job of adolescent drug maltreatment is going a more of import issue every twenty-four hours.
Surveies have shown that there has been a 78 per centum addition from 1992-1998 in drug maltreatment
among adolescents aged 12-17, including the drugs LSD and other psychedelic drugs, cocaine, and
marihuana ( Plohetski,1 ) . Increasing Numberss of teens every bit good as kids are deceasing as a consequence of
inhaling gasses from aerosol tins or puffing, to acquire high ( Hayes, 1 ) . Harmonizing to the 9th
one-year PRIDE study, pupil usage of most drugs has reached its highest degree in 9 old ages
( Policy.com,2 ) . All research is indicating towards the same way. Adolescent drug maltreatment is at an
all clip high and set uping immature America in a drastic manner.
Drug usage among young persons had shown marks of diminution between the mid 1970 s and
1990, but such usage appears to hold increased during the 1990 s. Among high school seniors, ego
reported marihuanas usage in the past month declined from about one out of three pupils in 1980 to
12 per centum in 1992. However, in 1995 about 21 per centum reported utilizing marihuana in the yesteryear
month. Approximately 1 in 20 high school seniors reported day-to-day marihuanas use ( Drug and
Alcohol Use, 48 ) .
Inhalant usage has been on the rise among immature adolescents as good. Inhalant maltreatment is
a serious job. Survey s show that about one in five kids will probably experiment with
inhalants before they graduate from high school. This figure sums to about a half million each
month ( Hayes, 1 ) . Inhalants are extremely toxic and extremely unpredictable. They are besides cheap, legal
and easy for most kids to obtain. Most physicians believe that inhalants should be acquiring the
same regard of marihuana and intoxicant. This is a message most childs are non acquiring.
A immense job associated with adolescents and drugs today is the gaining
popularity of rapture. Ecstasy is really similar to the love drug of the 1970 s MDA. However,
the major difference between the MDA from the 70 s and rapture from the 90 s is that rapture is
non pure. Almost all maker s of this pill combine MDMA with other drugs. By the clip it
reaches the consumer it may or may non hold been laced with other illicit stuff. By blending
several of these drugs together esthesiss may be enhanced, but one is seting themselves at hazard
for heat hyperpyrexia, heat failure, terrible encephalon and liver harm, or decease. Ecstasy, or E, is about
ever swallowed as a tablet or capsule. A normal dosage is around 100-125 mg. Black market
rapture is highly unsafe. These E tablets vary in strength and frequently contain other drugs.
MDMA, the primary drug in Ecstasy releases the encephalon chemical 5-hydroxytryptamine, promoting 1s temper
and moving as a short-run antidepressant. Most adolescents are non educated on the danger of
taking this drug. It is really popular among the nine and rave community. Several deceases have been
linked to taking this drug, normally from heat hyperpyrexia because users dance for long periods of clip in
hot nines without refilling lost organic structure fluids ( What is Ecstasy? , 1 ) . This drug is one of the most
unsafe drugs confronting our coevals today and because of the improper drug instruction of
American adolescents, more deceases will be related to it in the hereafter.
There are many factors that contribute to teenage drug maltreatment. National studies
hold found that adolescents whose baby-boom parents smoked marihuanas on a regular basis a coevals ago
are more likely to utilize drugs than other adolescents. The survey commissioned by the National
Center of Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, found that 58 % of parents who
one time smoked marihuanas on a regular basis would see it a crisis if their immature adolescent used the
drug, compared with 83 % of parents who ne’er tried marihuana. The survey says that adolescents
are more at hazard of utilizing drugs in general if their parents think that marihuana is comparatively
harmless. I agree with Joseph A. Califano Jr. , the presi
dent of the centre when he said, The
ambivalency of the babe boomers about marihuana is clearly a cardinal factor in adolescent drug usage.
( Trip,1 ) .
By jurisprudence, every K-12 school in the state having Federal money must hold a drug
bar plan starting in Kindergarten. All 50 provinces and over half of the state s school
territories use the Drug Abuse Resistance Education plan ( DARE ) which uses uniformed constabularies
officers that teach chiefly 5th and 6th graders how to state no to drugs. However, this plan has
had an utmost minimum impact on drug usage. Social psychologist William B. Hansen has been
analyzing drug bar plans for 20 old ages and has concluded that, They don Ts have any
grounds to endorse that up- that it works. ( Glazer, 653 ) . He explains that one of the chief
jobs with DARE is the fact that, 5th graders are bouncy and cuddly. They are non
leery when you walk in have oning a uniform. By junior high the same kids are seeking
for independency from grownups and are more influenced by their equals than a adult male in a uniform.
When the DARE plan was used in the 7th class, it was obvious the motive had worn off
( Glazer, 663 ) . When uniting the hapless drug instruction plans with the fact that many grownups
make non cognize how to speak to their kids about drugs, this is lending greatly to the
increasing drug usage among teens.
During the 1960 s, drug usage was glamorized by many. A resurgence of similar involvements in the
present clip have helped increase the acceptableness of drug usage. During a clip period where bell
undersides and vintage apparels every bit good as the popularity of the Grateful Dead and interior decorator coffin nail
igniters having marihuana foliages were mostly popular, history has surely repeated itself. LSD
art pieces has become aggregators points and the resurgence of hemp is highly outstanding. The
marihuanas foliage emblem has become a manner statements and interior decorator bongs and pipes are popular
points to sell. The thought of Hollywood romanticizing drug usage is still rather prevailing. The phrase
sex, drugs, and stone and axial rotation has surely described the lives of many celebrated instrumentalists. Lyrics
that many celebrated rappers sing are encrusted with mentions to blunts and 40 s ( maintain in head
many simple school childs look up to these vocalists ) . Numerous stars have been arrested for
ownership of drugs and many films have been based around uncontrolled substances. It seems
no affair where a immature adolescent will travel, they are faced with the issue of drugs one manner or
another. This will greatly impact their determination on whether or non to experiment with them.
One proposed policy on the issue of adolescent drug maltreatment is the nothing tolerance
jurisprudence. This is really similar to Rudy Guliani s successful attack to eliminating the offense in New
York City. Examples of zero-tolerance Torahs presently in topographic point for young person include significantly
increased punishments for selling drugs near schools, and ejection as the compulsory penalty for
pupil ownership of drugs. There is even a new federal legislative act keep backing federal college
fiscal assistance from those convicted of a drug offense. It has been noted that where zero tolerance
Torahs are in consequence, there has been a much greater success rate in covering with the job and
stemming dependence ( Drug usage Back Up for Youth, 1 ) .
Another proposed policy issued by President Clinton was naming General
Barry R.McCaffrey as the manager of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. Gen.
McCaffrey, who has been named the Drug Czar of the President s Cabinet, is authorized to
develop and organize the policies, ends, and aims of the Nation s drug control plan
( Policy.com, 3 ) . His chief focal point has been to diminish the sum of illegal drugs come ining the
United States and advance more drug consciousness among adolescents.
A 3rd proposed policy is one I have created. Based on my research I have
discovered that the major job associated with the rise of adolescent drug maltreatment is an utmost
deficiency of drug instruction. Schools today are practising a policy that has proved to bring forth hapless
consequences. Keeping the antecedently mentioned school jobs with D.A.R.E. in head, one can see
that if this is the policy that will be implemented in old ages to come, the current state of affairs will non
acquire better. I propose that pupils in 8th through 12th classs have a compulsory drug instruction
category as portion of their hebdomadal agenda. These categories should be run in association with net income free
organisations and directed by immature grownups who were one time adolescent drug maltreaters. This will non
do the pupils feel unequal as they might experience this manner with a uniformed officer in forepart of
them. This will besides repeat the thought that drug maltreatment is a serious job that can go on to
anyone. By holding pupils hear existent life narratives from existent people they will be more influenced
so, for illustration, watching a film. As portion of this compulsory drug instruction category, pupils
will besides be required to see a drug rehabilitation centre one time a twelvemonth where they can truly see the
effects drug maltreatment can hold on your head and organic structure. By implementing this policy, adolescents will
see true lives before them that were mostly effected by drug maltreatment. This may consequence their determination
on whether or non to seek drugs and/or use them.
My proposed policy is realistic, nevertheless, if implemented, it would take a long clip
to travel into consequence. The most of import benefits of this policy are that pupils will be able to acquire a
close expression at a existent life experience of a drug nut and see the jobs that can come from
seeking drugs. This may greatly consequence a immature individuals determination on whether or non to seek drugs in a
positive manner, which can finally take to salvaging a life from being a victim of drug maltreatment. It will
besides continue the drug instruction of pupils after 5th and 6th class which is the most of import
and influential clip in a immature individuals life. If this policy were to travel into consequence, I m certain the
plan would be really successful.
Since our system of authorities is so complex, the continuance between the clip the policy is
proposed and the clip it will travel into consequence is big. This policy would necessitate immediate blessing
from Gen. Barry McCaffrey, the drug Czar in President Clinton s cabinet. However, with the
recent President Elect, George W. Bush, coming into office within the following few hebdomads a new drug
Czar will most probably be appointed doing Gen. McCaffrey s say-so irrelevant. He would so
suggest the policy to President Clinton or the current President. If he approves it, it will so
pass many hours being passed through the system of cheques and balances where Congress, the
Senate, and the House of Representatives will make up one’s mind whether or non they approve it.
If approved, the following measure would be financing the undertaking. Since this class is taking
consequence in public schools the beginning of money for this undertaking will most likely come from school
revenue enhancements. Financing this plan would be included in the school budget which is what parents vote
on every twelvemonth. It does look logical that if school revenue enhancements were to be raised for any evident ground,
one every bit of import as beef uping a child s drug consciousness and instruction is a sensible 1.
School revenue enhancements might even non be greatly effected by this plan because it would switch the money
being spent on the current drug instruction plan to the new one.
If implemented, my proposed policy would so be a drastic alteration in the current school
cirriculum, but it will certainly be for the best. If schools keep working at this rate, they will be
openly disregarding a major job confronting their pupils. They will willingly direct pupils out into
the universe with a misperception of the dangers of drug usage. This is something that is indispensable life
cognition and is more of import than larning geometry cogent evidence and chemical expressions. Many
events in our history have required drastic alteration which has made the universe a better topographic point. If
people were excessively afraid to give adult females the right to vote or allow African Americans Civil rights
our universe may hold faced a catastrophe. These drastic alterations were necessary. Teenage drug maltreatment
is quickly going a larger job every twenty-four hours. If a drastic alteration is non made shortly, more
guiltless lives will fall victim to the terrible jobs of add-on.