Today calls for celebration! Drug experimenter, occultist and the "world's wickedest man," Aleister Crowley, successfully transcribed the first chapter of The Book of Law from the Stele of Revealing, on April 8, 1904.
Followers of Thelema may be upset to learn, however, that today also marks National DARE Day. Thelema follower believe that to "do what thou whilst, shall be the whole of the law." It's a mantra that's sure to clash with DARE's "Just Say No" message.
On the website, DARE backs up its ritual chanting with this:
This year millions of school children around the world will benefit from DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education), the highly acclaimed program that gives kids the skills they need to avoid involvement in drugs, gangs, and violence....
[DARE] is now being implemented in 75 percent of our nation's school districts and in more than 43 countries around the world.
Sadly, the program itself is about as effective as summoning Babalon. Studies have found that this "highly acclaimed" program doesn't do diddley squat. This is old news for Reasonoids, of course. Choice bits from Senior Editor Jacob Sullum's great coverage:
One study after another has found that students who complete DARE...are just as likely to use drugs as students who don't. Yet DARE claims it is constantly revising its curriculum, so any research indicating that it doesn't work is immediately outdated. And with a few exceptions, school districts–four-fifths of which use the program–always seem willing to give DARE another chance.
A study in the latest issue of the journal Health Education Research concludes that many schools use "heavily marketed curricula that have not been evaluated, have been evaluated inadequately or have been shown to be ineffective in reducing substance abuse." The lead researcher, Denise Hallfors of the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, does not mince words in her evaluation of DARE. "There's no scientific rationale whatsoever for maintaining DARE in the schools," she says.
But such criticism does not faze DARE. The organization's executive director, Charlie Parsons, told the Associated Press the research cited by skeptics "refers to DARE's old curriculum, which is no longer used."
Read the whole debunking of DARE magick here. Exorcize your DARE diamons here, here, here and... here. In 2001, Senior Editor Brian Doherty discussed Crowley's beastly individualism. And below, The Prince of Darkness sings for The Beast: