A pro-family lobbyist in The Tar Heel State says the National
Survey on Drug Use and Health's latest report on drug and alcohol
abuse has good and bad news.
The report measures the use of tobacco, alcohol,
illicit drugs (including non-medical use of prescription drugs) and
mental health in the United States. It shows that underage and
binge drinking increased, as did heroin use, while there was a
decline in prescription drug abuse from seven million people in
2010 to just over six million last year.
Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian
Action League of North Carolina, believes increased awareness
has something to do with the latter.
"I think education efforts to make parents … youth and others
aware of the dangers of abusing prescription drugs have been
working, as well as the implementation of matters like prescription
drug monitoring programs that reduce somebody's ability to doctor
shop and make it easier for states and healthcare providers to
share data," he suggests. "All of that kind of approach to the
abuse of prescription drugs is working."
While portions of the report are encouraging, Creech asserts it
is far from anything to celebrate. He contends America is a
drug-saturated society in desperate need of a spiritual
"Although government and nonprofit efforts to curb alcohol and
drug abuse are critical in importance, they do provide some
reductions," the family lobbyist recognizes. "Nevertheless, the
ability to overcome and having the emptiness of life filled so that
drugs are no longer desired or needed is to come to know the
Christ, who showed us our worth by giving His life for us, the
Christ who would lose all of our guilt and shame."
The rate of marijuana use increased to seven percent from a low
of 5.8 percent in 2007. Creech attributes the increased use to
state and local governments' efforts to legalize the drug.