by Dennis Townsend, Contributing Writer
There is something new coming to the high schools that’s bound to become a topic of many a discussions among many arm chair lawyers. I speak of drug testing students. With the increase in violence and high rates of truancy, officials are trying to determine if high drug use is responsible for some of the problems.
Some students are already yelling "foul" and claiming that their rights are being violated, but some students welcome the testing saying someone on drugs has the tendency to disrupt classroom learning. Some say that it depends on what kind of drugs the student is taking and while some see marijuana as not a bad thing, most view heroin and cocaine as unacceptable. It seems unlikely that any drug, including marijuana, will ever be tolerated in any learning institution, and I for one totally agree.
Athletes should always be given a drug test as part of a physical before being allowed to play because of the number of recent on field deaths due to cardiac arrest. A lot of attention has been given to head traumas, but cardiac arrest is the number one killer of student deaths on the playing field. With the combination of physical stress and possible hidden medical problems, taking any kind of illegal drug could be a death sentence. Finding hidden health problems is a major concern in high school athletics because the problem can most of the time be successfully treated.
For the non-athlete, taking drugs could still kill you because you are not getting a physical exam and therefore any health problem you have may go undetected, and just because you are young is no guarantee that you are invincible. The whole reason that drug testing in schools is going to become the norm is that it makes the schools safe from a variety of things including the person being bullied and winds up addicted to PCP and one day goes home and gets a shotgun or an automatic rifle and returns to the school bent on revenge.
Schools should always be a safe place where one goes to obtain a good education and not have to put up with an addict who cares nothing for the opportunity to learn.
by Michael Thompson, Contributing Writer
This Halloween, even if a child does not knock on your door proclaiming, "Trick-or-treat for UNICEF," you might consider a donation to the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund.
We may tend to envision our contributions paying for famished children to eat porridge from bowls with their fingers, but UNICEF does much more. Concerns beyond world hunger include schools, medical issues such as AIDS treatment and prevention, and fresh water supplies, just so name some samples.
The annual UNICEF budget is about $2.7 billion, two-third contributed by the governments of United Nations member countries and one-third from 6 million private citizens worldwide like you.
To contribute, visit this website. And always remember, if you are not financially situated to make a cash gift to an organization such as UNICEF, you can always donate your time to your local soup kitchen or to any worthy cause.
UNICEF estimates than 22,000 children in the world pass away each day, what we mean by "pass away" is "die," because of hunger and other poverty-related concerns. This should not be accepted, especially when we consider our comparative wealth.
P.S.: Just because a young American child is trick-or-treating for UNICEF, that doesn't mean you can't give them a candy bar in addition to your UNICEF contribution.
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