Today in English class Professor Red Ink finally dispensed with the MLA nonsense and got down to the real deal.
That’s right folks. We talked drugs today.
Because drugs are apparently number one on the prof’s agenda, he laid out his plan for fixing the system. First, legalize drugs across the board. But only make them available in government regulated stores, similar to the ABC liquor stores. Physicians would work with the government to decide how much of any given drug would be safe to sell at a time and boom. You’ve got a relatively drug-free nation. Now this was not a divisive issue among my classmates. Really, the class was divided in half between those who supported heavier enforcement of our current drug policy and those who supported legalizing so called ‘softer’ drugs like marijuana. And then the professor, who forced us to argue his policy.
Someone raised their hand and said that many drugs are extremely dangerous and addictive and therefore should not ever be legalized. He called that government propaganda and then read us ‘the best’ statistics available about people who become addicted to drugs. From an ambiguous number of people surveyed, he quoted the percentage of those people who had tried a given drug (ex. 10% of people surveyed had tried marijuana, 3% had tried crack cocaine) and then gave us the percentages of those who actually became addicted to the drug (ex. 2% became addicted to marijuana, 0.01% became addicted to crack cocaine). The problem was that the second set of relatively small percentages he took from the whole population, not from the sample. So he claimed that 2% of the whole population became addicted to cocaine, instead of giving the more realistic (and less misleading) statistic that 65% of people who had tried cocaine, became addicted. Imagine what would happen if you completely legalized all drugs. More people would have access to them and more people would become addicted.
All of the statistics above are just for example, but you get the gist. There were many, many more holes in his argument, which I will address later.