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If the Drug War Works, Why Did Teen Access to Marijuana Increase This Year?

Today, the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) released a new study that perfectly demolishes one of the central myths underlying the war on drugs. The National Survey on American Attitudes on Substance Abuse shows that youth access to marijuana has increased significantly in the past year:

According to the report, half of the 16- and 17-year-olds surveyed said their peers use marijuana more than tobacco. More teens say it’s easier to acquire marijuana than beer. And there’s a 35% increase from last year in the number of teens who say they can buy marijuana within an hour and a 14% increase in the number of teens who say they can find it in a day. [MPP]

It almost speaks for itself. Nothing could more directly obliterate the false notion that the war on marijuana is reducing youth access. Just days ago, the drug czar stood on a California mountaintop proudly pronouncing the importance of marijuana eradication. He's bent over backwards to explain that reductions in youth marijuana use provide proof that the war on marijuana is working.

What then can be said about marijuana's ever-increasing availability to young people? Rather obviously, recent declines in youth marijuana use owe nothing to the brutal and controversial tactics the drug czar is duty-bound to defend. After another year of dead dogs, dead informants and dead cops, marijuana is more available to our children than ever before. If fewer of them are using, then that is because they don't feel like it, not because they don't know where to get any.

Of course, the drug war supporters at CASA must have realized how badly their data reflects on marijuana prohibition, so they cooked up one the most embarrassingly backwards statistics possible:

Teens who can obtain marijuana readily are more likely to use it. Forty-five percent of teens who say they can get marijuana in an hour or less have used the drug, compared to 10 percent of those teens who say it would take them a day to get it and less than one percent of teens who say they would be unable to get it.

Oh, mercy. Is it really necessary to explain that teens who smoke marijuana are more likely to know where to buy it? This is just a crime against the scientific method, a pathetic face-saving ruse to defend marijuana prohibition within a report that unintentionally – yet transparently -- humiliates the drug war status quo.

Today, the drug war's failure to keep drugs out of the hands of our young people has been revealed in stark, unambiguous terms. No, the debate won't end here, but it is moments like this that cause one drug warrior after another, after another to jump ship and admit that the whole thing is just a monumental travesty.
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ONDCP response?

Does anyone else think they will eventually come around to blaming medical marijuana laws for undermining their ability to eradicate? Maybe come up with something saying youths have less access to "illegal" marijuana but can get it easier under the guise of "medical use?"

ONDCP credibility


Trust me, my dirty socks have more credibility than the ONDCP. The ONDCP is a propaganda machine and nothing else. Anytime someone brings the "children" into the drug war debate, it`s for deception purposes only. As soon as you mention drug legalization to a politician, they immediately mention the " children[kids]. Personal experience has taught me that the majority of marijuana users are adults. Politicians insist that you be 21 to buy alcohol. Politicians insist that "kids" should not provide proof of their age to buy "illegal" drugs. You do the math. Whenever adults start to talk about marijuana legalization to a politician, the politician responds by talking about "the children". Our society encourages alcohol use. Kids see it at the ball game. On billboards. Everywhere. But how dare you bring up marijuana legalization. The ONDCP is a LIE machine. A propaganda machine. If you believe anything the ONDCP says, then i have some ocean front property in South Dakota that i will sell you for $20/acre. The kid`s my ass.

Elliot Ness

Yes, the government will say that the second prohibition is working. Didn't it also say that the first was working?

Remember the show "The Untouchables"? It was about an alcohol warrior named Elliot Ness? Will there be a show about the second prohibition? Who will that Elliot Ness be?

Bob: The real failure of the "war on drugs"

The real failure of the "war on drugs" is that for all the laws against various drugs, that were fairly mundane around 1900-1920, apparently, there are now "epidemics" of their use after alcohol prohibition then and marijuana prohibition now.

While they are busy jailing Americans for these drugs like Weed, mexicans are coming in USA and using the Mexican Military to move drugs into USA. Which further increases drug use by Americans because who wants to work their ass off all week and have to see, smell, and hear these freaks every day with no hope of the government representing us or defending our sovereignty. I need a beer.


im a teen and oh god yes pot is everywhere i go from indiana,colorado especially and phoenix its everywhere because its harmless and like all things is safe in moderation.the gov needs to quit pretending they give a shit and let it be legalized for 21 and up and regualted like alcohol!

Actually, the drug war IS working --

Because it isn't, and never was, meant to stop drug use. Richard Nixon declared "war" on drugs for the sole purpose of appearing tough on crime by creating more crimes and imprisoning more people. And it worked. Like a charm. And the biggest scam ever perpetrated on the American people keeps right on working.

Medical Marijuana

Because the teens are smart and they discovered a loop hole that won't get them arrested for using marijuana.


Teens at California school getting high on medical marijuana


Anyone can get a medical marijuana card including teens.

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