The Instigator
Con (against)
6 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
0 Points

The D.A.R.E Program

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/15/2016 Category: Education
Updated: 4 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 219 times Debate No: 92755
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (0)
Votes (1)




Full resolution:
The Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E) program should be taught in schools.

"...D.A.R.E. is a comprehensive K-12 education program taught in thousands of schools in America and 52 other countries. D.A.R.E. curricula address drugs, violence, bullying, internet safety, and other high risk circumstances that today are too often a part of students’ lives." [1]

Should - must; ought

Round 1 - Acceptance
Round 2 - Opening Statements from Con, Rebuttals from Pro
Round 3 - Defense from Con, Opening Statements from Pro
Round 4 - Rebuttals from Con, Defense from Pro

1) No hate speech/ slander
2) No kritiks
3) No plagiarism
4) Please use citations
5) No forfeiture
6) No troll arguments
7) BoP is on Pro

Thank you!




Hello. I will accept this debate and agree to all the terms you've placed. I'll post my first argument soon,

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 1


Thank you for accepting my debate! Here are my arguments.

A. Abstinence Only Education Isn't Effective
B. D.A.R.E. Doesn't Prevent Drug Use
C. D.A.R.E. Violates the Hippocratic Oath

Here we go!

A. Abstinence Only Education Isn't Effective

In the program, the way they deter drug use is by teaching "Just Say No", or in other words, abstinence. [1] Unfortunately, this type of teaching has been proven to be ineffective and even harmful to the students, whether it be abstinence only education for sex or drugs. The debate over abstinence only sex education is good or not is a very different subject, so I'll mainly focus on the drugs side of the argument.

"The abstinence or 'Just Say No' model for health education has been used for years, primarily in the areas of sexuality and drug education; it has been shown to have minimal effectiveness." [2]

"Often, drug users talk about how, after being bombarded by frightening images of the worst possible effects of drug use, those internalized messages would actually backfire and have the exact opposite effect of their intention when they ended up trying illegal drugs for the first time. When none of the doomsday predictions come true after their first few times, users are left questioning the accuracy of all of the narratives they’d been given about drugs—including important ones about actual potential dangers....

"The only narratives about drug use offered in an educational context are negative and completely over-the-top. When these narratives fail to prevent use, they’re promptly rejected as incongruent with the actual, real experience of being high. A lot of people are underwhelmed, even, after all the drama and hype around illegal drugs." [3]

In other words, abstinence education doesn't even deter the drug use by discouraging it, but it backfires on the students when it perpetuates inaccurate information to the students.

B. D.A.R.E. Doesn't Prevent Drug Use

It's one thing that abstinence only education doesn't work, but what about the actual D.A.R.E. program? While it's main goal is to deter drug use, it fails at this entirely. In fact, it's associated with increased drug use. How so? Here are the facts.

For one, quite a few students respond negatively to the program. A whopping 40% of students said they were not influenced by the program. [4]

"33% of middle school students and 90% of high school students reported "negative" or "indifferent" feelings towards D.A.R.E. Students reported that the D.A.R.E. message is repeated so often at school that the concept has lost its meaning and becomes tedious." [5]

Okay, so students may have responded negatively, but that doesn't mean the program is ineffective, right? Unfortunately, that's not the case. One 2004 meta-analysis found that students who took D.A.R.E. were no different than those who didn't take it. [6] Another study found that there was a 3%-5% higher rate of drug use than students who did not participate. [7] This can prove to be harmful to students who are wasting their time with a program that doesn't even work.

C. D.A.R.E. Violates the Hippocratic Oath

"One of the oldest binding documents in history, the Oath written by Hippocrates is still held sacred by physicians: to treat the ill to the best of one's ability, to preserve a patient's privacy, to teach the secrets of medicine to the next generation, and so on." [8]

The Hippocratic Oath describes in both the classical and modern version to not harm patients, or in this case, students. The D.A.R.E. program goes against this, according to Scott O. Lilienfeld.

"Scott O. Lilienfeld, PhD, Professor of Psychology at Emory University, states in the peer-reviewed journal Perspectives on Psychological Science that D.A.R.E. may increase intake of alcohol and other drugs, making it a 'potentially harmful therapy (PHT).' D.A.R.E. 'overestimates the number of children and adolescents who engage in drug abuse,' and normalizes the use of substances like alcohol because of an 'excessive focus on severe substances' such as cocaine and heroin. The program therefore violates the physician and psychologists's Hippocratic Oath to 'do no harm.'" [5]

Again, the Hippocratic Oath is highly respected among physicians and psychologists to this day. My last point proves that students do have a risk of increased drug use if they participate in the D.A.R.E. program.

In conclusion, the D.A.R.E. program is ineffective and potentially dangerous to students who participate in it. Thank you. I look forward to my opponent's rebuttals. So long and goodnight!



Aristxtle forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


My argument extends.


Aristxtle forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


My argument extends. Vote Con!


Aristxtle forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by ThinkBig 3 months ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro forfeited so con gets the conduct point. Con shows that the DARE program is ineffective, violates the Hippocrates oath, and does not prevent drug abuse. Since pro forfeited, he did not refute them or present any arguments of his own. Sources go to con because she was the only one to use them, they were effective in providing evidence for her contentions, and were of strong quality. I vote con!