It is year two of Child Health Month's three-year awareness and prevention effort targeting substance abuse. Year one focused on tobacco addiction, labeling it correctly as a pediatric disease. This year the spotlight falls on an equally significant problem — alcohol use and abuse.
If you were impressed and motivated by the tobacco statistics last year, you should be truly aghast at American youths' yen for alcohol:
• Every day, on average, 11,318, 12- to 20-year-olds try alcohol for the first time; 6,488 try marijuana; 2,786 try cocaine.