Coming clean, and cleaning up

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 29, 2004

It's been a while since a story regarding a drug bust has been in our newspaper.

We had hoped things were getting better.

Unfortunately, with the story in today's paper we see that the problem is still out there. Methamphetamine continues to be a problem in our county and we all need to do something about it.

It's a problem that's not going to just go away or disappear into the backwaters of some swampy area in the middle of the woods.

What, might you ask, do we propose to do to fight this problem?

Quite simply, we say educate and prosecute.

By continuing to educate the public on the dangers of illegal drugs, specifically methamphetamine, we will help build a society where the problem begins to resolve itself.

If we tell people they're drinking Drano, it might come across a lot better than giving a rundown of the chemical agents. Afterall, look at the back of a label Š if we really knew what all those chemicals were, we might think twice before consuming.

The same principal applies to synthetic drugs. Chemical names don't mean a thing to these people. They don't understand the consequences. However, they do know what drain cleaner is, and hopefully, we can show them what it does.

We're lucky to have dedicated law enforcement officers in this county who are willing to combat the war on drugs on the local level. What we don't have is adequate funding for the sheriff's department, drug task force, and police departments to offer the needed assistance to the schools, civic groups, non-profit organizations, businesses and other outlets where the education is so desperately needed.

Call it liberal thinking or hard-headedness, but we really believe that with education and proper funding, we can overcome our drug problems. Of course, the first step, like any other process of overcoming, is to admit the problem. Everyone, not just the newspaper and the law enforcement agencies, has to admit that drugs remain a serious problem in our county.

With that admission, the next step - the education to combat the problem can begin.