From the February 1999 Idaho Observer:

Time for a "Happy Snack?"

On the NBC Evening News, February 9, 1999, Tom Brokaw anchored a hard-hitting, cutting-edge piece of journalism exposing the fact that, through the dispensing of mood-altering drugs like ritalin and Prosac to school children, the government is the most successful drug dealer in America. We would all be very impressed if it weren't for the fact that we front-paged the state-sponsored campaign to turn energetic children into junkies four years ago in The Oregon Observer.

As far as dominant media news reporting goes, we have to give Brokaw and crew some credit because they did present a balanced news story (something that we are not able to do) regarding the issue. But, what was so compelling was a piece of footage that reminded me of what a nurse in a mental hospital might say to a group of patients about to receive "meds."

The video footage recorded a school nurse who was addressing a line of children ranging from about second to fourth grade. In a cheerful voice the nurse said, "It's time for our happy snack," as she gave each child a dose of a powerfully addictive drug so that the children would behave themselves in class.

Wouldn't it be less expensive and better for the child if we stopped giving energetic children narcotics and made them do calisthenics or run bleacher steps until they had calmed down enough to do schoolwork? Must we give our children "happy snacks" so that they can sit like zombies in school until they join the work force as mindless and uneducated idiots? ~(DWH)

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Hari Heath

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