MSNBC Writes Local News Scare Trend Piece About Teenagers Drinking Hand Sanitizer to get Drunk.
The local news scare piece is a form created to exploit parents’ natural concern for their kids by describing anecdotal events as “trends that all the teenagers are doing.” Some previous examples include rainbow parties, vodka eyeballing, and vodka gummy bears.
In the most recent iteration, this story claims that kids are distilling hand sanitizer in order to make a strong alcohol shot.
There’s a new dangerous trend among teenagers — trying to get drunk by guzzling hand sanitizer. Over the past month at least eight teens in Los Angeles County have landed in area emergency rooms with alcohol poisonings after drinking the cheap liquid, the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles reports.
Eight teens, that’s a lot of teens, probably over 50 percent of the total teenage American population. I already fear for all of our lives.
While this news story could be effective on a parent with a distant relationship to his or her own child and trusts scare pieces by ratings-hungry networks and websites over their own children, it likely wont work on anyone with a critical thought.
The story also buried the real news of this story.
According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, the substances most frequently involved in teen poisonings in 2010 (the most recent data available) were:
Ibuprofen — 10,030 calls
Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (Antidepressants such as Paxil, Prozac and Zoloft) — 8,419 calls
Acetaminophen (adult formula) — 7,995 calls
Atypical Antipsychotics (Ablify, Risperdal) — 7,319 calls
Benzodiazepines (Valium, Xanax) — 7,192
Alcohol — 5,061 calls
Scandal! As a young journalist myself, I will write a local new scare piece about all of the teenagers trying to get their fix from Ibuprofen.
They call it, beating-the-crap-out-of-yourself-then-taking-a-bunch-of-pain-meds-ing. Teenagers all around the world are doing it, from Amsterdam to Zaire, and also in the United States of America.
According to a non-representative statistic that doesn’t even have the decency to pretend that there is a statistical trend showing a consistent rise of this behavior, five kids talked about beating-the-crap-out-of-yourself-then-taking-a-bunch-of-pain-meds-ing while they were behind me in the line for the midnight viewing of The Hunger Games, so this is clearly happening everywhere.
An expert who really wants to read his or her name in an article said he guesses that beating-the-crap-out-of-yourself-then-taking-a-bunch-of-pain-meds-ing is dangerous and on the rise, because, I don’t know, Internet?