DRUGS, EDUCATION AND HARM-MINIMISATION: are we altogether on the wrong track?
The Australian Government’s Principles for School Drug Education still state that the overall goal must be harm minimisation.
The rationale seems to be:
(1) most people use drugs only occasionally and for a short part of their lives.
(2) it’s impossible to eliminate drugs from society anyway.
(3) therefore, “harm-minimisation” is good enough.
They assume that the main problem with badly-behaved people is their being ignorant – so that education is the answer.
Plato taught that 2400 years ago. He was wrong. But we still believe it. We like the idea. It dominates how our taxes get spent.
It’s wrong because it’s deterministic — telling wrong-doing persons that, deep down, they can’t really change.
Jesus Christ, however, taught that happiness comes with purity.
“Blessed are the pure in heart,” he said, “for they shall see God.” (Matthew’s gospel, chapter 5)
Is purity something realistic to aim at?
If we discipline ourselves to even make a start in behaving better, do we really begin, by God’s grace, to re-constitute ourselves?
Should we be teaching our young people that?