“Just Say No” was an advertising campaign, part of the U.S. “War on Drugs”, prevalent during the 1980s and early 1990s, to discourage children from engaging in illegal recreational drug use by offering various ways of saying no. The slogan was created and championed by First Lady Nancy Reagan during her husband’s presidency. “Just Say No”. After all these years and all the fun poked at Nancy Reagan for her antidrug campaign, you know what, she was right.
I was a casualty of peer pressure and outside influences that suggested that, “Hey pot isn’t so bad and doesn’t lead to hard drug use.” I did not have anyone around me encouraging me not too, so I did. For me, and so many of my friends, it started with pot and just kept going. I was very young, sixth grade. From that time forward I began to lose interest in the things that were healthy for me like baseball and art. School was just a place I was forced to go, most days. As other drugs became available I became consumer.
The argument for medical marijuana has been around for years. The claims that it helped in pain for cancer patients and other disorders has been accepted by just about everyone. If you in any way argued against it, you were shamed and discounted. However, the true effects of pot have begun to surface. In the recent issue of Imprimis (Jan. 2019), a publication of Hillsdale College, Yale graduate and writer Alex Berenson dissected what we have been told and what science has reported and they do not match up.
He read all the studies, big, small, everything he could find. Medical journals and papers. He went all in. He reported how the use was clearly tied to mental illness, aggressive behavior, paranoia and the use of harder drugs. He quoted the facts and sources. It revealed the black cloud of satans objective. Pot is not helpful in alleviating pain or almost any other ailment. Debunked by the facts.
At a recent outdoor show I met an outfitter and landowner from Colorado. He was very supportive of the legalization of marijuana. He said, “It is great. It has kept our property taxes way down. There is really no harm from it.” I asked him, “Do you know what I do?” I have known him for years and he knows we deal with wounded boys from hurting families.
I told him about a boy I watched go from star athlete and straight A student to an out-of-control boy who is now living each day for the next high. Acid, PCP, whatever he can get. I told him, let me tell you about the boy I have known for years who is now in prison for murder because he spun out on drugs. It all started with a little “innocent” pot use. I hear all the time from kids, “I can’t wait to move to Colorado to become a pot farmer.”
So this is not your usual Kids Outdoor Zone blog. It was not meant to be. This is a line in the sand. In KOZ we do not agree with pot use, we do not support pot use. We do not condone it and we would ask all our leaders to speak clearly in conversations with their boys to “Just say no.” The strains of pot available today are far beyond anything Mrs. Regan and the medical and mental health folks of that day imagined. They are toxic and deadly. Maybe not the first time, but that is where it begins. Boys are beginning a deep, dark trail when they believe what society tells them about pot.
It’s not unlike so much else we are fighting with our boys. Pornography. Sex before marriage. Life itself is being discounted and taught as optional. Satan is digging in, our boys are an open target and he is here.
Let me share a story from Mathew. In Mathew 5:1-20 Jesus is confronted with the demon possessed man. He cast out the demons (Legion) into the pigs. Some accounts say 2000 pigs. The man, with a clear mind, asks Jesus if he can follow Him. Wherever he goes. Jesus tells him to go back to his village and tell them all about what God did.
So many moving parts here but what struck me today was that the guy, healed of the demons, was told to go and share his rescue. It reminded me of my rescue from addiction April 17, 1986. The 12-Step program said to then share my story. God has used it for His works. Some of you have been given the gift of healing by Jesus. Use it. The boys of our world need to know that there are demons. Drugs are one of satans favorite. A boy who knows Jesus is not destined to walk in the brokenness and destruction of drugs and addiction. They must hear that from us, the truth.
Men, brothers of Jesus, we have got to be bold. There are things we must stand against. We draw a line in the sand and stand firm. Yes we will have struggles. Our own kids may be battling these very demons. Get on your knees. Pray hard for the rescue of their hearts. Love them no matter what. I truly believe it was the prayers of my mother and others that saved me. It is a large order. You have been commission if you asked Jesus into your heart. Mount up, prepare for battle. Let’s ride.