Big dogs on campus to sniff drugs
MAUI public schools are considering bringing drug-sniffing dogs on campus, which eventually could lead to the use of drug dogs at all public schools. That could lead to an increase in the number of dogs going to schools to learn how to sniff out drugs in order to meet the huge demand for drug-sniffing dogs. And of course, that would lead to an increase in the number of drug-sniffing dogs who search drug-sniffing dog schools for drug-using dogs.
One of the ugly secrets of the entire drug-sniffing dog industry is that 38 percent of all dogs who undergo drug-sniffing dog training succumb to the temptation to use drugs themselves. These poor creatures can be seen covertly trying to sniff the white lines off parking spaces and trying to light crack pipes behind the drug-sniffing dog school gym, an enterprise that is exceedingly difficult without thumbs.
Dogs drummed out of the drug-sniffing dog schools are shuffled into other programs, such as bomb-sniffing dog schools, where they either get their drug problem under control or end up as part of the wallpaper. There's nothing sadder than the look on a doggie's face after he's just snorted 14 pounds of C-4 plastic explosive.
Drug-sniffing dogs used to be the coolest law enforcement canines on the block. But as terrorism became a serious problem, the bomb-sniffing dogs became the top dogs, sort of like Vin Diesel versus Chevy Chase.
DRUG DOGS are increasingly relegated to public intermediate and high school campuses where, on a big day, they might uncover an alcohol lamp in a science lab or half a can of Bud Light in the teachers' lounge.
Bomb dogs get the high-profile gigs at airports, train stations and youth hostels in any city hosting International Monetary Fund global economy conferences.
I attended public school in Hawaii, and we didn't need drug-sniffing dogs. That's mainly because everyone pretty much knew who the drug users were. You'd just stick your head in any art class and, well, there they were. I signed up for an art class when I first enrolled in public school here because I was lazy and thought it would be an easy A. It turned out to be a dumping ground for some of the most incorrigible druggies and misfits in the school. Apparently anyone seriously interested in art took French.
I don't know if having drug-sniffing dogs on public school campuses is a good thing or not. A lot of schools now have a "zero-tolerance" policy on drugs, which means that when a drug-sniffing dog rats out a kid to the authorities, that kid is tossed out of school. This has several effects. First, it makes the drug-sniffing dog feel pretty good. Then it allegedly makes the schools safer for other students. And finally it allows the expelled student to immediately pursue his career as a criminal, where he'll no doubt eventually end up in a prison patrolled by drug-sniffing dogs.
Charles Memminger, the National Society of Newspaper Columnists' 2004 First Place Award winner for humor writing, appears Sundays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org