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Editorial: Time out on blame game

The Bethlehem Spotlight last week reported that three students at Bethlehem Central High School had overdosed on methadone at school, and at around the same time five others were arrested on various drug charges.

Since then, we’re told a few more arrests for marijuana possession have been made, searches are being stepped up and the district has discussed exactly how it will be moving forward in addressing this issue publicly and with the student body.

This is, of course, pretty serious stuff, and for now it seems the district is rightly treating it as such. We could speculate endlessly about the root causes of these incidents and who’s ultimately culpable. Parents? Society? Mark Zuckerberg?

As good as that exercise might feel, it would be irresponsible on our part. There are many reasons youngsters stray in many ways. Suffice it to say these students who have made mistakes will hopefully get not only what’s coming to them but also the help they need.

Reader poll

Has the issue of drugs in our schools been blown out of proportion?

  • Yes. 47%
  • No. 53%

17 total votes.

That hasn’t stopped the debate from raging, though. There are those who take these events, combined with arrests earlier this year for vandalism (some of which was quite serious), to mean BC students are all over privileged, drug-addled troublemakers.

But folks who lambaste students most likely missed our coverage of the pupils who organized a concert to benefit flood victims, or collected coats for the homeless, or who volunteer to work with autistic children or reach new heights of scholastic and athletic achievement.

Maybe it’s easy to flip past those stories because we report them so regularly. For every youthful miscreant in our pages, there are ten others who are working to make the world and themselves better. We report the former because our readers deserve to know what’s happening in their communities. We report the latter because it’s those stories that make our communities home.

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