Red Ribbon Week began Monday. Many students can relate to this event through childhood memories of elementary and middle school.Wearing a red ribbon, proudly displayed on your shirt, or on your pants if you lived on the edge back in 1994, made students feel like they were coming together for a cause. Sometimes it would even lead to competition, and whichever class had all the students wearing his or her ribbon would win ice cream or a pizza party, depending on the year.
Unfortunately, that’s where most students’ knowledge on the subject ends.
Meant to honor those who stay drug-free, the meaning is often lost on younger audiences as a bitter subject candy-coated with prizes.
Red Ribbon Week is also a time to honor those who have been lost in the fight against drugs. The reason the week was created was to honor Special Agent Kiki Camarena, who was kidnapped, tortured and then murdered by drug traffickers in Mexico.
Despite its festive treatment in primary schools, it is important for students young and old who participate in Red Ribbon Week to know that it takes place for a reason beyond a piece of fabric and a slogan.
Students, the youngest members of the electorate, should take the initiative to learn what they can on the subject and determine whether the proper measures are being taken to stem drug use in this country, be it Red Ribbon Week or something else.
This is an issue of special importance to students, as the prevalence of drugs on campus is a fact of college life.
This week was conceived to remind everyone of the harm drugs can cause. It is an important message that must not be lost through simply wearing ribbons or bracelets as a fashion statement or as part of a contest.
Copy Desk Chief Ryan Claunch for the Editorial Board