DARE’s McGruff the crime dog arrested for drug possession: How well has this Anti-Drug Program worked?

John Morales is a former McGruff actor who is now facing charges for possession of marijuana, weapons charges, and diagrams to a pot growing operation.

“Police who raided Morales’ residence seized 1,000 marijuana plants and 9,000 rounds of ammunition for 27 weapons — including a shotgun, pistols, rifles, and a military grenade launcher, according to court documents obtained by NBC News.”

Despite the fact that this story brings up plenty of hilarious dog puns, it raises a different question: how effective have programs like DARE been, if the people running them are not even committed to them?

Now, I do not really mind a little bit of weed, I think it should be fully decriminalized. But Morales demonstrates that the staff of programs like DARE, or at least the staff willing to ware giant dog suits, don’t really live the message they force upon children.

do you REALLY want this guy around your children… I mean really, PBR? Awful!

But what does the science have to say about programs like DARE? The research shows that it has a small, and short lived effect to reduce drug use. But the effectiveness of non-interactive programs, such as DARE, pails in comparison to more interactive programs, like any of these 66 programs.

Big deal though, at least it is SOMEWHAT positive, right? Well not really. Given the time constraints that students already face, any classroom time not spent on learning curriculum (or more importantly, how to fill in bubbles with number two pencils, but that’s another gripe) is time taken away from their education.

This is a life skill, right?

Further more, it’s kinda expensive. The operating budget for DARE in 2011 was 3.7 million. In a time when billion and trillions are thrown around by politicians carelessly, it is easy to lose sight of the value of one million dollars.

Imagine how many new text books the school system could buy with 3.7 million dollars! Considering the average price paid by the public school system for of a hard cover textbook was $20 in 2013 , the DARE program cost the equivalent of 175,000 textbooks.

To wrap this up, I ask you to consider, do we really need DARE any more? Or has this program gone to the dogs?… Sorry I couldn’t help it 🙂

Best regards,
B.G. Carter

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