Wednesday, October 01, 2003

The Ecstasy Debacle: Another Nail in the Coffin of Credibility: "Ecstasy's story began nearly thirty years ago, when it was first used legally in the 1970s as an adjunct to psychotherapy. Psychiatrists were impressed with its ability to help couples communicate, to enable trauma victims to heal, and to soothe chronically ill patients facing death. MDMA (Ecstasy's chemical name) crossed over into recreational circles in the early 1980s and shortly thereafter became illegal. Its use remained relatively quiet until the early 1990s, when it became associated with underground dance parties known as 'Raves.'

"Ecstasy became popular with growing numbers of young people, and at its peak in 2000, nearly 12 percent of high school seniors admitted to using it at least once. As problems, largely associated with look-a-like pills, overheating and dehydration, were reported, the frenzied print and electronic media ran 1,000 fear-producing stories."

"So much for science, and so much for convincing young people that the government is telling the truth. Indeed, the recent Science retraction is just another nail in the coffin of credibility when it comes to what adults tell young people about drugs...

"If young Americans are ever to believe what our government tells them about drugs and other policy issues, we must be sure that our messages are based on sound science rather than political ideology."

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