Opinion | Your Privacy: Should the average NSU student be drug tested?

SAMANTHA MAIETTE
Opinion Columnist

Walking through University Place and Columns, a distinct scent lingers in the air. It is not an uncommon one, and most college students can recognize the smell in their sleep.

Throughout middle and high school, students experience some form of anti-drug education, the most common being Drug Abuse Resistance Education, or D.A.R.E. However, as students grow, this information tends to leave their minds.

How many people actually remember D.A.R.E. training? I know I don’t.

High school and college is a time of self-exploration and the time to push boundaries in any way possible. How else are we to grow as people? However, there does come a time when curiosity turns into trouble.

This brings up a simple question. Should Northwestern State University students be subjected to drug testing by the school?

The overall answer is no, but there are cases where it could be necessary.

The first and biggest concern: cost. Who would shell out the $50-80 needed for each student to be tested? I’m sure the university will not want to fork over half a million dollars to test the roughly 10,000 students currently enrolled, but as broke college students, we don’t have money just laying around either.

The money aspect creates an impasse that would cause students to complain more than they did when TOPS was cut.

The second issue is that it will breach privacy. Nowhere in the student handbook does it say the university can look into our private lives. If a student obtains good grades and abides by rules in the handbook, what does it matter what they do in their free time?

There are circumstances in which a student should be drug tested, though.

Athletes are a good example; they are required by the NCAA to complete a drug test sometime throughout the year. This is just to prove whether or not anyone, in any sport, is taking performance-enhancing supplements to improve their game play.

There are so many sides to the argument about drug testing students that one could lose their voice talking about it. While there are examples of negative side effects of drugs on the human body and mind, we also face concerns over privacy and expenses associated with performing tests, especially on a large group of people.

All in all, there is no one way to create a middle ground between two opposing sides. It is all a matter of willpower on who will win a battle like this in the end.

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