I have a lot of good ideas laid out for this blog, but first I would like to make an official introduction. I am Demonhype and I am one of the people who opposes drug testing on the grounds that it is an immoral violation of human dignity, on the grounds that it is a subcontracting of Fourth Amendment civil rights violation to the private sector (you don't think your employer isn't writing off the cost of those tests, or getting juicy tax breaks, or other government subsidies like discounts on worker's comp, do you?), on the grounds that it is ineffective and unreliable security theater that is defrauding companies while making them both less safe and less productive by preying on their ignorance and moral panic, and on the grounds that it is counterproductive to the drug problem and actually makes it worse at the expense of people who need help the most. Anyone who has made an honest effort to educate themselves on this subject knows that all unbiased (read: not conducted by nor paid for by drug testing companies or other financially interested groups) shows all of this to be true.
I was elated when WA and CO legalized marijuana, even though I am not a user, because I know that the vast majority of positive tests are for marijuana--indeed, the Drug War and it's profiteers have pretty much made the War on Drugs into the War on Marijuana, because of it's prevalence and because it helps create an illusion of efficacy for drug testing companies and opportunistic employer-based rehabilitation center. When the effort to neutralize those laws was led by a former DEA agent AND owner of a drug-testing company, I laughed because I knew they were scared. Medical marijuana laws have compromised their ability to force drug testing into every workplace and walk of life in the states that have them--in fact, in my job search I found that a certain trucking company had a bolded pro-suspicionless testing policy at the bottom of every job post in every state except one--Colorado. Friends from California have expressed amazement when I asked about the prevalence of drug testing out there--not that they were surprised that I, a non-user, was asking but why I would have to ask. Legalization is going to restore our rights to us again.
Then the extinction burst hit me. I knew there would be one, but I didn't know it would happen so fast or that I would be caught in the crossfire. I live in a non-medical marijuana state and have been working at a company that had a strict with-suspicion policy. It seems the drug testing companies are ramping up their scare tactics in non-medical marijuana states in order to achieve as near-total a saturation of their dishonest practice as they can. Perhaps they are just trying to get one last boost of profit before they inevitably fail. Perhaps they believe they can keep legalization from happening by forcing marijuana users to stop using. Of course, forcing marijuana users to stop using out of fear isn’t going to stop them from voting pro-legalization--and in fact drug testing not only doesn't stop people from using marijuana or prevent users from finding employment, but it also has a tendency to drive marijuana users into using harder drugs that are essentially a crap shoot to detect given the laughably narrow detection window, but I don’t expect people in favor of the Drug War to think rationally anyway.
Unfortunately they have gotten to my employer and talked them into enacting a full-on suspicion-less testing program, both pre-employment and random, likely by emphasizing that they can actually make money off it in the short term by writing off the tests, getting a huge tax break, and having the government subsidize their workers comp program—and leaving out some of the facts, such as that suspicion-less drug testing programs actually lower worker productivity and morale, lower actual workplace safety (as all drug testing programs dis-incentivize reporting, thus artificially improving the safety record on paper while creating a much more hazardous work environment), and cost more money in the long run by contributing to a higher turnover rate. Many companies have eliminated at least their random programs because of these very facts, though they cling to pre-employment testing for the juicy government subsidies and the political points they think they will get from a public they can't seem to realize is mostly opposed to the Drug War and no longer impressed by "tough on drugs" posturing.
I was already with my back to the wall. The job I have sucks and is far below my level of intelligence, training and talent, but I worked there because I felt my employer valued and respected me enough not to declare my flesh as company property. However, even then I could only stew and fume in silence because I was afraid if I spoke out against the Drug War and especially drug testing I would be tracked down and forced to be violated. I am not a user and have only a fear of getting a false positive on a drug test (since as many as 30 percent of positive tests are false positives), but I lived in fear of being violated and being forced to submit to something morally wrong in order to pay my bills. But now that I will be violated no matter what I do, I have no more fear. They have left me with nowhere to run, and in doing so they have liberated my tongue. They will not silence me ever again.
When marijuana becomes legal in more and more places and the federal government finally has no choice but to end the federal legislation, and when employers are no longer allowed to fire people for using marijuana, I hope those of you who use marijuana and will no longer have anything to fear will join me in speaking out, loud and proud, against the testing companies. And in the meantime, I hope you can use some of my resources, as well as this safe-space, to help you raise awareness and combat the skewed data and, dare I say it, lies of the drug testing companies.
The corporatists have robbed us of our very flesh with this dishonest security theater, but perhaps we might be able to take our bodies back if we keep talking about this and correcting their deliberate mis-representations of their services.
I will also say a word or two on my commenting policy. This is a safe-space for people who oppose drug testing and a place for the anti-drug testing populace to perhaps have a chance to organize and, as I stated in the paragraph beneath the title, pro-drug testing trolls will not be allowed. You have had the entirety of this country for thirty years now to spew your POV, and even now those of us who oppose drug testing must be afraid to speak out for fear of being targeted in this witch-hunt, while you have the right to blather openly even in the workplace with your privileged, if benighted, view. Even at my workplace, those of us who oppose the company’s “your body is now company property” policy can only walk about with sour faces at best, if we even dare to go that far since even that can be enough to make us a target of the witch-hunters, while those who support the loss of their bodily autonomy have free reign to "rah rah rah" openly about how our loss of civil rights will somehow keep us from being robbed at gunpoint by a meth-head (like I said, I don’t expect rational thought from people who support drug testing at this point—all they have is sound bytes, broad and long-debunked assumptions, and putrid cowardice.) The lies from the Drug War proponents and profiteers, and especially from the drug testing companies, have forcibly monopolized this conversation for decades and continue to bully the opposition by any means necessary. I will allow no pro-drug war trolls to derail the efforts of raising awareness of their dishonesty by spamming the conversation with their falsehoods and sound bytes and, as usual, arguing primarily by gish gallop as they do on every single other such conversation all over the internet.