Shortly after completing a bike ride of the Karakoram Highway in China and nearly a year to the day after our home was burnt to the ground by drug producers in the small hamlet of Allendale, Nova Scotia, Canada, we were informed that a close family member in Mexico had become another innocent victim in the cross fires of the drug violence. Another innocent life, along with family, whose lives have been shattered by violence, corruption and dislocation - the net result of the drug trade.
Drug use is not a “victimless crime". Illicit drugs are a cancer that destroy the lives of consumers, communities and entire nations. As de facto refugees from the Drug War we know all too well the true face of the drug trade. Drugs are not a recreational past time, rather a corrosive force that ruins the lives of millions. The world of narcotics is NOT a victimless crime!
During our journey we will make presentations at schools along the way. Using our adventure, my years of teaching experience and most of all our first hand experience with the most sinister aspects of drugs and the wealth of alternatives, as demonstrated by our journey, we hope to inspire youth to choose life, adventure, love for the planet and health over drugs.
Cycling to Stop the Cycle message does not take side on the issue of drug legalization. These topics will be addressed in our presentations to give students a better understanding of the complex nature of social-political and economic problems intertwined with the drug trade.
Our message is much simpler - keep busy, challenge yourself, appreciate and love the natural world around you and you won't have the need nor the time for drugs. Those same regions of the world dedicated to the production of narcotics are beautiful lands full of healthy adventures and honest friendly people who would benefit more from a thriving eco-tourism industry than the short term "benefits" of drug production.
If we can reduce the demand for drugs by engaging youth in more wholesome pursuits young people on both sides of this drama will benefit.