The Adderall double standard

Adderall is no less fair than other differences between students.

by Eric Best

Yesterday a column titled âÄúLet Students Use AdderallâÄù argued for a wider availability of the stimulant Adderall. Adderall is a common prescription drug prescribed to patients with ADHD, narcolepsy and an array of other common health problems. I agree with the article, but wish to explore more of its cultural implications.

Stimulant use is not an unusual thing. People with depression and mood disorders âÄî more than 15 percent of college-age people âÄî are prescribed pills that allow them to experience the world more normally without the negative emotional influence.

Yet, as a âÄústudy drug,âÄù is using Adderall unfair? If a student takes Adderall, is it considered cheating? One could make the comparison that professional athletes are not allowed to take steroids in order to improve their performance; thus, students should not either.

But, paradoxically, double standards still exist on this issue in society. Biotechnology influences our lives in many ways already that would not fall under a purely medical application. Plastic surgery and body enhancement make us look more attractive (which can even boost your GPA indirectly). Gene therapy and the influence of a personâÄôs genes theoretically allow us to create a âÄúbetterâÄù human being. This is not to mention the inequalities that already exist between students that directly or indirectly influence GPA, like wealth, race, sexual orientation, health conditions and other life circumstances.

Adderall does not increase skill or knowledge; rather, it allows an individual to apply their knowledge more easily, quickly and with more focus. In class, a test only requires students to understand and apply the material, which Adderall has no direct influence on.

Adderall is not for everyone âÄî it is an addictive drug and is not without adverse effects âÄî but it has its place as a beneficial use of technology on the human body, one which we should not neglect.