Methamphetamine: Meth-Cooking Demo at School Perturbs Parents 5/6/05

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Controversy is afoot in Grays Harbor County, Washington, over a deputy sheriff's demonstration of how to cook methamphetamine for a high school class as part of an anti-drug presentation, Seattle's KOMO TV reported Monday. Parents who heard about the do-it-yourself demo told the station they went "through the roof" when they heard about it. But the sheriff's office said it was standard operating procedure.

controversial school meth cooking demo
In a video of the presentation obtained by parents of students at Elma High School, the sheriff's deputy is shown mixing and pouring chemicals. "And the reaction will start occurring down there and start bubbling up," he explained. "Then you'll have a little bit down at the bottom, the white stuff, and that's your meth."

"I was really upset when my daughter had come home and said 'mom we learned how to make meth today in school,' " parent Teresa McCutcheon told KOMO. "My jaw just kind of dropped and I said, 'what?'"

McCutcheon's daughter Christene, who saw the deputy's demonstration, said it's one thing to learn about the dangers of meth and how to spot a meth lab, but showing kids how to make it is a different story. "I think it's a good thing to be educated about it, but it's bad if they're teaching you how to do it," said the high school freshman.

Grays County Undersheriff Rick Scott defended the demonstration, although he did say the department would review it given the complaints. "We talk about how methamphetamine is manufactured," he told KOMO. I think there's a big difference between 'how' it is manufactured and 'how to' manufacture it," he said. The department has used the same demonstration for years, he said. "We'll look at this, but we stand pretty firm in that this is an educational tool. The schools have been very receptive to it in years passed."

Not exactly the sort of chemistry class students and parents were expecting, though.

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Issue #385 -- 5/6/05

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Editorial: Bay State Agony | War on Drugs Shifts to War on Marijuana | Students at SUNY New Paltz Rally to Demand End of Marijuana Expulsions | "Marijuana Is Safer" -- Reformers Take Up a New Refrain | Announcement: DRCNet/Perry Fund Event to Feature US Rep. Jim McDermott, June 1 in Seattle | Medical Marijuana: Federal Bill Re-launched and Amendment Plans Announced at DC Press Conference | Weekly: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories | Asset Forfeiture: Albuquerque Police Broke Law with Seized Funds | Methamphetamine: Oregon Doctors Reject Proposal to Turn in Meth Users to Health Officials | Methamphetamine: Meth-Cooking Demo at School Perturbs Parents | Oxycontin: Massachusetts Lawmakers Weigh Ban on Popular Pain Reliever | Prisons: Some Architects Call for Profession to Reject Prison, Jail Design Jobs | Needle Exchange: New Jersey Cities Expect NEP Approval Today | Needle Exchange: Massachusetts Meltdown | Reefer Madness: Feds Warn That Marijuana Makes Kids Crazy | Weekly: This Week in History | Job Listing: Outreach Coordinator, Coalition for Higher Education Act Reform (DRCNet) | Weekly: The Reformer's Calendar

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