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If a man pays you in cash, be wary; maybe his credit’s no good.

A Question That Must be Answered
by John D. Weagraff

MY CONVICTIONS do not allow me to submit to the fatalism and naivete of many people who feel that either the present drug situation isn’t as critical as we would be led to believe. Neither do I feel it has mushroomed to proportions where any efforts at correction would be futile. I do not believe that any problem posing a potential threat to the security of society can be cast to the hands of chance without drastic consequences. The very basis of man’s interaction is jeopardized by the widespread use of drugs.

To escape from the world and himself has been one of man’s basic desires since his realization as a being of emotion. Man has contrived many ways to attain this separation, hoping to find himself. My intentions are not to implicate the purpose of the existence of man, but rather to expose that which threatens to distort its meaning.

The mounting drug problem is making its presence a reality, not only in rat-infested slums and as a preoccupation of the underworld, but in once quiet middle-class neighborhoods. Its seriousness can be verified by casually scanning the first few pages of any newspaper. Yes, the problem has found its way even into our community – listen to the muffled conversations, the rumors – it is here!

Until recently, the laws against the sale and/or possession of drugs were extremely harsh and restrictive. However, with the emergence of the “New Morality” and the progressive generation, the codes of a more conservative era seem ready for retirement. The trend in the laws seems to be one of laxity, with legislators attempting to accommodate the desires of the majority. Reacting to this apparent softening is a large portion of the population who claim that drugs are immoral and that the laws to restrict their use should be maintained.

Drugs as a Moral Question

Yet as long as society chooses to deal with drugs in a legalistic manner, being of the idea that laws can be the final answer, there will be confusion. No flurry of amendments, laws, legal codes, or official proclamations can solve the problem. Because the question of drugs is a moral one, man must ultimately turn to his beliefs for his answers. In effect the individual must turn to One who is greater than himself, for with God the ultimate solution lies. It is said in the Bible that God is the beginning and the end – the answer to all questions. Man, in the end, will be forced to realize that a meaningful existence is not contained within a capsule, not on the tip of a hypodermic needle, but with God. Men must ask themselves the question: would God have me do this, would he have me turn from that which has been given to me, turn inward to my own desires, or outward to the guidance of God?

For drugs threaten not only man’s physical body but more important his spiritual soundness. Man’s basic social interaction is jeopardized by uncontrolled drug usage. Societies through history have been shaken to their foundations, but those which survived had one similarity. All were marked by the willingness of people to come forward from their own self-centered lives and work in unison; not by their advanced technologies nor intellectual enlightenment. Can a society endure if men choose to hide within drug-induced euphoria? I think not. When man desires to turn himself inward, and not outward to his fellow man, he has become a hopeless pawn of less than manly forces. Such a force is drugs!

This article originally appeared in the Franklin Regional Senior High School Panther issue of April 2, 1970.

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News Notes

Prop decides not to attend CIT, instead he’ll go to CIT.

Come again? No, that’s correct as it stands. Though accepted at Caltech (California Institute of Technology), I’ll be commuting to Carnegie-Mellon University (formerly Carnegie Institute of Technology) for my freshman year. The NAPA had a part in my acceptance at Caltech, too. Admissions Director Peter Miller, a former English professor, (who traveled across the country to interview me and about four hundred other applicants) seemed quite interested in the hobbies of printing and amateur journalism, even after I showed him a copy of Pine Tree.

If the association needs someone for recorder in 1971-1972, I will be willing and (hopefully) able to serve.

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Pine Tree #4 can be blamed on Robert A. (Rob) Witter, prop, of Pine Tree Press, This PT edited, set, and printed at Murrysville, Pa. 15668. Four hundred sixty copies for NAPA bundle.

Printed on the Pine Tree Press

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