Anti-Drug Organization Publishes Op-Ed Calling For Marijuana Legalization, Quickly Takes It Down

D.A.R.E., an organization that is dedicated to “teaching students good decision-making skills to help them lead safe and healthy lives,” recently posted an article that had some jumping for joy as others scratched their head in confusion. The notable anti-drug organization posted what appeared to be a pro-marijuana legalization piece on their website blog. This left marijuana advocates wondering if they may have a new partner for change. However, the article was quickly pulled from the site and noted by D.A.R.E. director Ronald J. Brogan as a “mistake.”

NY Mag reports that the D.A.R.E. organization, famous for “daring” school-aged children to “just say no” to drugs, recently posted a op-ed calling for the legalization of marijuana in Ohio. The piece was written by former deputy sheriff Carlis McDerment in response to this letter in the Columbus Dispatch. In his piece, McDerment notes that the legalization of marijuana would actually make kids safer, not in increased danger as Dr. Johanna Said had inferred in her letter to the Dispatch.

“People like me, and other advocates of marijuana legalization, are not totally blind to the harms that drugs pose to children. We just happen to know that legalizing and regulating marijuana will actually make everyone safer.”

Screenshot of the article posted to D.A.R.E.'s website prior to the deletion. (Screenshot courtesy of NY Mag)

The fact that the D.A.R.E. organization shared the piece seemed to indicate that the notoriously anti-drug group was changing its approach. However, the notion that the organization was advocating for safer children through responsible legalization of cannabis quickly came crashing down when it was revealed the article was posted by accident by an outside company.

D.A.R.E. director Ronald J. Brogan claimed that the article had been published on the D.A.R.E. website accidentally by a third-party service the organization uses for blog postings.

“The article you wrote about was mistakenly posted on our website by a service we use. We have not changed our stance of being opposed to the legalization of marijuana.”

So marijuana advocates do not have an unlikely partner in their legalization efforts. Instead, it appears that one of D.A.R.E.’s website service providers may be in search of a new client.

What do you think about the legalization of marijuana? Do you agree with sheriff deputy McDerment that legalization would make children safer by undercutting the dangerous illegal market? Or do you agree with Dr. Said that marijuana legalization would put additional children at risk?

[Image Credit: Getty Images/ Alex Wong]