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by Peter Moskos

September 10, 2009

Drug Tests

I wrote about my drug test a few days ago.

Tonight I asked my students if they had ever been drug tested. Approximately 2/3 of my masters students (n ~ 55) and all of my undergraduate students (n ~ 30) have been through a drug test. Every single one. That shocked me.

It also bothers me. It also bothers some (but by no means all) of my students.


ChristMotForbud said...

I agree with your comments and perspectives on Drug Tests.

It seems they've become yet another big business that throws its weight around and can bully politicians with the smoke screen of self-righteousness.

This is probably the main thing that bothers me about moving back to Mass. Not being drug tested, but ever since I was a squirt my Dad's complained about how overly-regulated Mass. is. He didn't like it when they banned mineral spirits, he didn't like it when they banned any and every use of lead paint, it seems you have to have a license just to walk down the street.

Everything has pros and cons, but instead of trying to get at the root of the problems, politicians eagerly apply twisted patch on top of twisted patch; it's like we live a house that's been wallpapered so many times to hide deficiencies that the wallpaper is thicker than the walls themselves! AND it's causing structural damage to the building itself!

A year ago when I gave blood I was told they were going to test my blood. "Fine," I thought, that only makes sense, don't pass along something to someone else I am unaware I have! I asked her what they would test for. "EVERYTHING!" she said with a sinister sound ("We've got you now!"), a holier-than-thou attitude, and "you're guilty until proven innocent" look. I groaned inwardly over this, but I asked because I don't have health insurance and really do want them to find out, and TELL ME, if I have some malady; I know they can detect a lot of stuff via blood, like cancers, etc…

I pressed her to be specific, but she avoided it. Clearly all she had on her mind was DRUGS!!! Ok, so I happen to live near what has been called ~ "the black tar heroin capital of the U.S." or similar claim to fame, and I've been told of people who eat Oxycontin all day, and I think I've met people who love crystal meth, and I'm sure marijuana is big business in my part of town, but did she really need to act that way? The only thing that makes me go back is the belief I'm helping someone, not for their "friendliness" and definitely not because of their sugary fruit drinks or sugary processed white flour snacks afterwards.

ChristMotForbud said...

With regards to laws, rules, and regulations…

Admittedly they have a place, but the thing that drives me mad is trying read and understand them. It's like our government only hires people who don't know how to write clearly or concisely. (Or they only write for lawyers/accountants/etc… so that you have to hire lawyers, et al to figure them out.)

I wish I was a teacher over them, I'd give them all F's! And tell them to go back and re-write every darn thing, from top to bottom.

I'd teach them the benefits of using tables instead of long paragraphs. I'd teach them the benefits of using bullet-point lists instead of dense paragraphs. Etc… How did they not learn this in school?