Sunday, February 3, 2013

Mission 2013 #23 How To Prevent Drug Use

There is a sudden interest in my part of the world for stopping drug addiction. Public officials, church leaders and families have awoken to the fact that a lot of people are destroying their lives with drugs. Drug abuse has been a major problem in America since the Sixties when I was an Associate Dean at the University of Cincinnati. But the public only becomes aware of it when people in power are confronted with the problem. Heroin that is cheap and as available is coffee has brought drug destruction to the surface in middle class and upper class communities.

When people in power become aware of a problem in America they  think they must do something and fast! The cops are overwhelmed, the courts are overwhelmed, the government agencies are overwhelmed, schools are overwhelmed, churches are in denial because families are falling apart.

In America we FIX THINGS. We BUILD THINGS. We CHANGE THINGS. Our ongoing motto is:


Let's face, it, we only feel good if we are actively trying to fix things. What we do may make the problem worse but we rush to fix it because it makes us feel useful, powerful and competent.  In graduate school at Southern Illinois I took a great class in Anthropology taught be a top educator in the Kennedy White House who left academe to train the first classes of Peace Corps Volunteers.

The Peace Corps was a perfect example of  American idealism and the fix it mentality. There was poverty, disease, and disaster all over the globe and we were prosperous, peaceful and experts at everything. All we had to do was take our superior knowledge to an ignorant populace in other countries and they would carry us away on their shoulders with love and admiration.

The name of our text book was ironically Man Takes Control. One of the stories was about a poor country in Africa that was trying to raise corn without fertilizer, insecticides, modern farming methods, etc. The ears they produced were small, filled with insects and eaten by local animals. In America we have learned through decades of research how to grow large, disease resistant corn and how to keep animals away.

Simple answer. Show the stupid locals how to grow better corn. Here is where you, dear reader, come in. Predict what happened and win a free book. The person who writes the prediction closest to the actual case study will get a copy of my eBook Hope and Change for Humpty Dumpty.

If you want to prevent your kids, neighbors, friends and community from doing drugs, engaging in sex, porn, crime, cheating, etc you need to think this over and decide what works. Or, like many community programs, just go on and do what we have always done and expect different results.


Gary Sweeten

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