D.A.R.E, or Drug Abuse Resistance Education, the nation’s largest anti-drug non-profit group, has announced that after this month they will no longer indoctrinate public school elementary kids against the evils of marijuana.
D.A.R.E. has been preaching against marijuana since the just-say-no days of the 1980s, and the use of marijuana by kids is the only victory that the group claims it’s been able to deliver during that time. That self-congratulatory claim is itself dubious, however, since several studies and government audits over the years have argued that D.A.R.E. has actually been responsible for rising rates of pot smoking among adolescents, who might not have known anything about marijuana if it wasn’t for being exposed to it by D.A.R.E. Indeed, this controversy is why D.A.R.E.’s funding in recent years has plummeted from more than $10 million per year to just one third that amount, and why, hoping to reverse that trend, the group recently unveiled a new and hip anti-drug campaign called “Keeping It Real.”
D.A.R.E. will continue to agitate against recreational pot smoking to middle and high school students. The news about D.A.R.E dropping elementary school kids from its anti-pot crusade comes via Reasons magazine, which first found out that Washington State’s D.A.R.E. program was making the change on Nov. 6, the same day voters in that state and Colorado made history by legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes.