It makes me want to scream FOURTH AMENDMENT. This is the one that protects us from the powers that be simply walking into our homes and going through our stuff to see if we “might” have committed crimes.  It’s what prevents law enforcement from listening in on our private phone calls without reason.  It’s the closest thing we have to a legal right to privacy.  That’s right, nowhere in the constitution does it specifically grant us the right to privacy – but we do have

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

This is going to piss some of you off. I will not recant.

I see state after state proposing laws that require people receiving public aid to take drug tests.  This is wrong on so many levels it has taken me days to figure out where to begin. It is all coming from the same place – strident Republican tea-partiers desperately trying to appear like they are effective leaders.  The same people who claim to want government out of our private lives, who claim to want to reduce wasteful spending, that is, unless it is something their supporters would “like”.

To what purpose are these laws?  When the War on Drugs began, a lot of jobs started drug testing, and most people went along, because those jobs had REASONS for making sure their employees were clean. Because if they weren’t there would be a genuine public risk. Pilots, police, bus drivers,  all could cause harm if they went to work on drugs.  I’m OK with that.  But what I hear now is that there seems to be the idea that folks on welfare take those checks and head right down to the local crack dealer for a fix.  Instead of, say, buying food or clothing for their children.  And many of these laws bar those failing from getting public aid for a year.  Lets look at a fictional case or three.

Debby has three kids, a deadbeat dad not helping her, two jobs at minimum wage, and she gets public assistance.  She doesn’t buy drugs, doesn’t drink, but every once in a while her neighbor stops by and shares a joint with her and they share stories and a good time after the kids are in bed.  Three weeks after one of these drug fueled orgies Debby goes to renew her aid application, and fails a drug test.  Aid – denied. She wasn’t high on anything, had never spent a dime on weed, but now, she faces homelessness and foster care for her children. A family destroyed.

Let’s look at another.  Betsy smokes cigarettes – pack a day or more, and drinks rotgut malt liquor as long as she can stay awake, soon as she can get away with it after her second shitty job.  She also has two kids, her husband “Tom” is basically the same as she,  they receive public aid “for the family”.  The kids are neglected, malnourished and suffering from secondhand smoke inhalation that would make me physically ill. They head down to renew their aid, pass the “drug” test, and tada, more money.

The people proposing these laws are universally Republican – a party that claims to want to keep government “out of our private lives” and supposedly hates “wasteful, useless government programs”.   I call shenanigans.  Hypocrisy. The numbers don’t support it, the logic is flawed, the results would be nothing more than misery for many and yet another intrusive, wasteful, useless government program. Remember, these are pretty much the same people who are crying foul about health insurance providing contraceptives, claiming it “intrudes” into their life and their “rights”.  And pretty much the same people who support laws requiring transvaginal ultrasound prior to a women having an abortion.  About as intrusive as it gets.

Fact is, the people who spend all their money on drugs are usually far to whacked out to complete the paperwork for welfare.  They need our help, too.  Here’s a third case. Shelby – has two kids in foster care, no home, no job and whenever she gets the money, she’s high on meth. She sells her body for drug money and will likely be dead by age 30. No public assistance for her. Did she choose this? No. Her parents sold her to scum for sex when she was 14, fed her drugs so she wouldn’t fight back. Now she’s hooked, and its pretty much too late to save her. She’s a good person, but there is no hope in sight. She’s the Lost Girl.

I can’t go on.  The rage is getting to me.


Please see “Stop the Insanity of a Pill for Every Ill”

PS thank you Sarah, for pointing out my spelling error “Fourth” DOH! Not sure why WordPress’s spell checker passed on that one

  1. Sarah Caldwell says:

    Like your blogging, just an editorial correction, that would be the FOURTH amendment! Amen Brother!

  2. […] also Stop the Insanity II Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

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