Just Say No, But Say it Loudly!

Essay by J.T. StockerJunior High, 7th grade December 1995

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But say it loudly!!

A profile of cocaine and it's effects on two lives

Greek mythology tells of a young god, Morpheus, god of dreams.

Morpheus planted a special purple flower called the lotus. Soon the people of

the land smelled the sweet flowers and ate them. They immediately feel into

a deep and troubled sleep. From that day on, they awoke only long enough to

gather the lotus flowers and sleep again. Eventually they lost their strength

and willpower and wanted only to drift in and out of sleep.1 The story of the

lotus-eaters and similar tales from ancient times show us that drug use is not

new. Today this problem threatens all of our society. The worst, most deadly

of drugs, however, is cocaine. This report will talk about what cocaine is,

what it does to the human body, and two fantastic people who gave their lives

because of it.

Today, over 5 million people use cocaine each month. Each day, 3,000

people try cocaine for the first time.2 Cocaine is a white powder made from

the leaves of the cocoa plant. Cocaine is first pressed to form a paste; then,

the paste is mixed with strong chemicals to make a white, powdery mixture.

Most cocaine comes from South America. It is estimated that about 400 tons

of cocaine is smuggled out of South America each year. Half of this cocaine

ends up on the streets of the United States.

Cocaine is a stimulant. That means that when it is used, it speeds up

the way the brain works. It causes the brain to send out too many electrical

signals that then get mixed up. Because the brain tells the heart how fast

and often to beat, using cocaine can make the heart pump so...