3 separate short answer for the following 8 Questions
Answer should be well thought-out, well-written, and
include appropriately cited research and text references where applicable.
Discussion Question: Why Psychoactive Drugs?
Every known culture on our
planet has used some form of mind-altering substances and you are going to
learn in this class that the practice of using of psychoactive drugs has been
around for a very long time (watch the Youtube documentary “Ancient Drugs”and
is probably NEVER going away. The obvious question then, is why are they so
important and attractive to us as a species? More simply why do people use
psycoactive drugs? I do not want your knee-jerk, media programed,
party-line opinion. I would very much like you to think about it considering
the "big picture" (not just the latest crack-head horror story).
Perhaps Google "Why do people do drugs?" or something similar and do
a bit of research. You will come up with tons of reasons, but our discussion
goal is to boil it down to its essence. Go forth and learn something!
Discussion Question: The War on Drugs?
There has been a growing
consensus in the past couple of decades among politicians, experts, law
enforcement professionals and the public at large that the "War on
Drugs" (primarily using the Criminal Justice System to solve the problem
of drug abuse) has been a total failure. Here is the discussion question: Has
the "War on Drugs" worked? If not why not and if so why has it
worked? I do not want your personal opinion unless you can proffer evidence
to support it. (read: a bit of research will be required). As always
"attaboy" responses = 0.
Discussion Question - Cocaine vs. Crack?
Some people do not realize
that Cocaine (the snortable kind that was wildly popular and hip in the 1980s -
and beyond) is exactly the same psychoactive drug as "crack" that
became the urban plague of the 90s (and beyond). Although the snortable form of
cocaine is certainly addictive, the smokable crack form is much more
addictive. After reading about drug ingestion, brain physiology and
chemistry in our current chapters, I want you to venture your educated opinion
about why the smokable form of cocaine is so much more addictive than the
snortable form. Understanding this effect will teach you many of the essential
dynamics of drug ingestion and action that are the learning objectives of this
Discussion Question - Alcohol: the "other side of the story."
We have all heard the
alcohol horror stories, but it remains a very, very, very popular psychoactive
drug - like it or not! There are some things about the psychoactive effects of
alcohol that keep it attractive to many people. After reading about the biochemistry
of alcohol, explain why it remains so popular. Personal opinion MUST be founded
on what you have learned about the biochemistry of this drug. There were tons
of ATTABOYS in the last discussion and I remind you that they = 0 points.
Discussion Question - The Power of Addictive Drugs!
The Amphetamines (that is
a group of similar psychoactive substances of which Meth is only one), the
Opiates (all the various forms of the opium poppy), and Cocaine although they
are chemically very different drugs do share a biochemical similarity
that unites them all in their addictive potential. After reading about them,
venture your educated explanation of the why they are ALL (that is, what
they have in common) so effective at hijacking brain chemistry and physiology
to create addiction. Here is a hint: the secret mechanism is built into all of
Discussion Question: LSD and Religion?
This discussion is pretty
deep and there is no "perfectly right answer" to it, but it is about
something very important that few people know anything about. LSD (you may have
heard of the infamous Tim Leary) and a host of other powerfully hallucinogenic
psychoactive substances have been used for centuries to invoke religious
inspiration. You should do at least some outside research before you compose
your post. but here is the Discussion Question for Module 6: Why do these
chemicals have a connection to religious/philosophical perspectives? This
should be an interesting discussion
Discussion Question: How does marijuana work?
Marijuana has been used
for thousands of years. It is probably the most widely used illict (in many
places) psychoactive substance on Earth. For much of this time we have
has no idea about how or why this substance does things to the human brain that
lots and lots of people like. This discussion question is going to
require some outside research to answer well and I highly recommend some very
well done and current documentaries on Youtube as the best way to learn about
the most current research findings. Here is the question and you can certainly
answer in common English, but it should be up-to-date and accurate: How
does marijuana use create changes in the human brain that have resulted in it
being so popular?
Discussion Question: Does Drug Treatment Really Work?
There are many experts who
have done extensive research on the effectiveness of drug treatment programs
and concluded that most are a dismal failure. Do a bit of internet
research and come to your own conclusions and report your findings. Remember a
few important conditions: 1) Many people stop using addictive drugs on their
own without the help of formal treatment programs. 2) Some drug addictions are
way more difficult to treat than others. and 3) The definition of success is
very important. Many programs brag about "success rates," but
for how long? Relapse rates over time are very, very high for most
seriously addictive drugs.