D.A.R.E. Web site punked by fake anti-pot news

By Oscar Pascual |

Kids visiting the website for the federally-funded anti-drug organization D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) over the past month have learned that marijuana is one of the most dangerous drugs on earth — influencing the youth to overdose on marijuana-infused Flintstones vitamins, get pregnant, and die young.

The problem is that none of it is actually true.

“Edible Marijuana Candies Kill 9 in Colorado, 12 at Coachella,” reads the headline of a news story recently posted on the organization’s web page, which actually turned out to be a completely fabricated article published by the satirical website, topekasnews.com.

“Children are being addicted to marijuana,” rants the story’s writer, Haywood Bynum III. “I knew this day would come, when a liberal president allowed a state to legally sell Marijuana Flintstone Vitamins to children. What are the consequences? Let us turn to science.”

The author’s satire was apparently so spot-on that D.A.R.E officials felt the need to repost the rant in its entirety, accepting the false report as accurate.

The Washington Post‘s Christopher Ingraham initially found the fake news on D.A.R.E.’s website. After Ingraham called the organization to inquire about the story, D.A.R.E. immediately removed the article without providing a comment.

You can still see the post, however, on the Internet Archive.

D.A.R.E. is known for its in-school programs that invite local police to schools in order to properly educate them about the dangers of drugs through reputable facts and sources.

They now risk undermining their message by running a satirical piece that states, “For every one joint of marijuana, four teenagers become burdened with pregnancy.”

D.A.R.E. aren’t the only people to incorrectly use Reefer Madness-esque satirical pieces to try to prove their anti-drug stance. Sweden’s justice minister Beatrice Ask once posted a fake news item on Facebook claiming that 37 people had died from only the first day that Colorado’s legal marijuana laws went into effect.

Despite falsely informing the public that one bag of “marijuana candy” sold causes 16 violent crimes to be committed, D.A.R.E. continues to receive funding from the Justice Department, the Department of State, and numerous other government agencies and corporations.

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons