Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Drug Busts

I'm a fairly liberal guy. I realize that college students like to party and make mistakes with alcohol and narcotics. I've counseled such students as well as such adults. You only need to visit heinous sites like "" to observe the realities of what happens when someone drinks too much alcohol or smokes too much pot. I'm not a "ban all illegal substances" and "lock the teenagers up" kinda guy. We have legal and social systems in place to assist people who legally drink alcohol. We have laws banning the use of illegal and illicit narcotics. Moreover, the predominant culture around most college campuses is a culture that offers 2 for 1 beer nights, and free "jello shots." There are thousands of undergrads and grads alike who know where they can get their 4:20. Young adults like to party and all of the legal restrictions in the world won't change that fact. The question nonetheless remains, how and what are the best ways to inform students about the risks they take when they drink too much or participate in the distribution and use of illegal narcotics?

This is my main point, the Drug Bust that went down at San Diego State University exposes a narcotic problem that makes me very uncomfortable and afraid for public school college students. There is evidence to suggest that fraternity houses in and around SDSU essentially served as drug distribution centers. I assume that these houses, or at least their members, benefited from the purchase of illegal narcotics to other college students as well as perhaps to high school students. James Kitchen, SDSU's Vice President of Student Affairs says that six SDSU fraternities have been placed on interim suspension and several fraternity members were arrested as part of an investigation into illegal activities.

We can't legislate reasonable and rational behavior when it comes to snorting cocaine, especially when there is a market for the product. I'm not sure that all sorts of high school education regarding narcotics will help either. On the other hand, we've got to increase our levels of vigilance, and foster transparency in sorority, fraternity, and residential hall communities as far as narcotics are concerned. I don't believe what happened at San Diego State is an isolated event, especially in and around the party schools of the West and Southwest. I'd be terrified to have to call a parent, companion, or friends of a student who overdosed on drugs that they purchased from a fellow student. I'm totally open to hearing suggestions about making sure that we don't have to report the same sort of news on the UA campus, or even worse, read about the death of a student because he/she OD'd at a frat party.

Blessings Along the Way,