|Let's Make Peace With Drugs
of speed issued to GI's during Vietnam war. R Stone 5/5/94
Department estimate of citizens smoking marijuana.
of Americans who have smoked pot.
to taxpayers, off just arresting, not imprisoning, cannabis
users in 1994. Extrapolated from U.S. Justice Dept.
arrested for marijuana between 1965 to 1991 . 81% were
charged with possession not sale.
on the Drug War since 1980.
Drug Enforcement budget. 700% increase since 1981. Source
of drug offenders in state prisons. 20% no prior offense.
80% no crime of violence. N.Y. Times 7/9/'94.
tablets taken by the U.S. Air Force during W W II
The War on drugs is another attempt
to legislate behavior. It failed during Prohibition. At the
statistics show, it's failed now. Urine tests are just a
part of the greatest intrusion into American' citizens private
lives in the history of our country.
Politicians have manufactured a hysteria over drugs , and then manipulated
that hysteria to remove our civil liberties. But common sense is slowly
returning. Forfeiture laws, where citizen's property is seized without
a conviction and even for the most minor possession, are being struck
down. Federal Judges Like Jack Weinstein and Whitman Knapp are refusing
to sit on drug cases that require mandatory sentences.
Many people are seriously concerned about drug and alcohol abuse on the
job that involve public safety like airline pilots, bus drivers, police,
etc. With over 70% of accidents occurring from alcohol abuse, these problems
can be better solved with a not-intrusive video game test, than an inaccurate
When an accident occurs because of abuse, a clamor rises to restrict
people's rights to improve security. But there is a price in living in
a free democratic society. Life can only be reasonably safe. If you want
to safeguard against every danger then you give the government totalitarian
Excessive drug or alcohol use is not desirable. But chasing after the
weekend party goer who blows off a little steam is going overboard. People
in every culture have needed outlets to release frustrations, or explore
levels of perception. Drugs are as old as the human family. And America
is a particularly drug oriented culture. So much so, that we are the
culture which invented, the DRUG STORE.
In a multi cultural society of 250,000,000 trying to solve cultural problems
with science and technology, rather than common sense, winds up with
a Big Brother world where politicians manipulate or create fear for personal
gain and power.
If this sounds overstated, consider the legal body searches
that constitute urine testing. Female workers have contacted
Byrd Labs who have been fired, though they tested negative
for drugs. These women worked in small companies and believe
their employers also tested their urine sample for pregnancy.
The said they were told they were terminated because of "cutbacks",
but believed the company did not want employees who were
going to take time off to have children. They also believed
the cost to the company health plan was a factor. Regrettably
they had no recourse.
In another case, a boss announced that he was "personally supervising" the
testing program. He then demanded his female employees allow him in the
bathroom to observe them because he wanted to make sure that he was getting
a "good sample".
Often the medication listing is added to your personnel file. In this
economy of job cut backs many employees are fired because they pose health
risks that have nothing to due with drugs. Your records from urine tests
enter the computer maze, and false entries may follow you for life.
If you give up your urine, with today's technology, you are giving up
a mirror to your inner body. The prospect of giving this power to the
government or private employers is frightening...and in the long run,
ominous. What is more private than your own body? Is non alcohol drug
use really so widespread that we have to pit worker against company,
and give up even more of our personal rights?
|Useful Phone Numbers:
Many people who fail urine tests must challenge the results quickly. The
organizations listed here are a good starting place for information about
defending your rights. We would appreciate readers sending us any other
numbers or contacts that might be helpful.
|American Civil Liberties Union
Butterfield Jay Foundation
California NORML Hotline
CAPP High Tech workers union
Digit Press (GA) Info Line
Legal Action Center
National Lawyers Guild
N.O.R.M.L. Legal Referral
N.O.R.M.L. Information Line
Performance Factors Makes video impairment test
Testing Expert Witness Good for Legal Cases