Today the National Institute on Drug Abuse released the latest results from its Monitoring the Future survey of students, and there is still hardly any evidence of the methamphetamine "epidemic" about which we've been hearing so much. In fact, there were statistically significant drops in lifetime use of meth among 10th- and 12th-graders between 2004 and 2005. Past-year and past-month use also fell in both grades. The only increase in meth use was among eighth-graders, with lifetime use rising from 2.5 percent to 3.1 percent, past-year use rising from 1.5 percent to 1.8 percent, and past-month use rising from 0.6 percent to 0.7 percent. None of these increases was statistically significant. As I've mentioned before, the picture is similar in surveys of adults: flat or falling use during the last several years. After seeing the latest numbers, I'm sure Congress will relent and let us have easy access to cold medicine.
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