Kids on drugs: They’re children you know. Maybe your own. (1970)

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The TIME guide to drugs and the young

For every parent… For every teacher… 

Get your Drugs and the young booklet

At least 5 million youngsters in this country have tried marijuana. They’re not delinquents or from urban slums. They’re kids you know. Maybe your own.

Like it or not, drugs permeate much of today’s youth culture. Children as young as nine or ten are singing songs of drug-induced highs, wearing clothing inspired by psychedelic dreams, speaking the jargon of the addict, and experimenting with dozens of possibly harmful substances.

A dilemma for adults

For parents, teachers and legislators, drugs have become a nightmare. Drug abuse defies facile explanations and easy solutions. More often than not, well-meaning but ill-informed adults are alienating the youngsters they seek to help.

Against this background, the TIME Education Program has created DRUGS AND THE YOUNG, a clear, comprehensive and unemotional look at drug abuse.

MORE: Woodstock through the eyes of the attendees (1969)

Originally prepared for distribution to teachers enrolled in TIME’s Social Studies Program, this exclusive guide is now being made available to the public. Its price is $1.50 per booklet; or for orders of more than 10 booklets, $1.00 each. (Postage and handling included.) Many of the points brought out by the booklet are surprising; some are shocking.

For example:

  • Unlike heroin, most drugs taken by teenagers are relatively inexpensive. A “joint” of marijuana costs only about 75 cents. A Dexedrine pill just 10c.
  • Many parents unwittingly steer their children toward experimentation by their own abuse of so-called accepted drugs.
  • Underworld pushers don’t hook most youngsters on drugs. Their friends do.
  • Drug education should begin at about the third-grade level. Drug abuse has already reached some junior high schools.
An honest appraisal

DRUGS AND THE YOUNG makes it clear that the only answer to this problem is proper education. Not the naive dissemination of misinformation that has created a “credibility gap” between the generations, but an honest appraisal of the drugs themselves and of the values by which we live.

MORE: Booklet: New facts about marijuana (1970)

The booklet points out that the worst strategy a community can adopt is to close its eyes and pretend that no problem exists. It is in the comfortable suburban areas and rural towns — the ‘it can’t happen here places’ — that drug use is growing fastest.

1970 Kids and drugs

Contents include
  • What drugs are youngsters using?
  • How dangerous are they?
  • Why do youngsters start on drugs?
  • How often does experimentation lead to addiction?
  • Where do parents go wrong?
  • How should drugs be approached in the classroom?

First-person accounts by two youngsters of their experiences with drugs (on spirit-master for easy duplication).

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