“Every time a parent is with their child, it’s an opportunity for them to discuss drugs,” encourages a physician from the American Academy of Pediatrics on ABC’s “Good Morning America” in 1997 (Glassner, The Culture of Fear).

But should drugs be our biggest fear?

  Are the drugs truly who’s to blame?   

According to the National Vital Statistic reports, processed by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), the leading causes of death in the United States annually are:

Tobacco: 435,000 deaths

Poor health/Physical Inactivity:365,000

Alcohol/Alcohol Related Accidents:85,000 deaths

In contrast, Illicit drug use fell after deaths caused by toxic agent, suicide, homicide and even sexual behaviors, causing only a fraction, 17,000, of the total deaths in America.

More specifically, marijuana,
a drug occupying 12% of federal and state prisons, “costing tax payers over $1 billion annually,
Caused ZERO deaths in 2003.

In These Times;

Clearly, well-being is not of true concern...

Since as early as 1875, the American government has falsely blamed the use of and addiction to these “illicit drugs” for many acclaimed faults in American society. But the villain is clear. In a discussion about the legalization of Marijuana, CBS news put it plainly,
“if we must outlaw everything potentially dangerous, then we need a federal speed limit of 30mph and a ban on fatty foods greasing the obesity epidemic killing over 300,000 Americans annually."

Perhaps we should refocus our efforts.