Differential patterns of drug involvement among Israeli youth

Sections

Abstract
Introduction
Research method
Findings

Details

Author: S. Giora SHOHAM, G. RAHAV, Y. ESFORMES, Joanna BLAU, Nava KAPLINSKY, R. MARKOVSKY, B. WOLF
Pages: 17 to 32
Creation Date: 1978/01/01

Differential patterns of drug involvement among Israeli youth

Professor S. Giora SHOHAM Faculty of Law
G. RAHAV
Y. ESFORMES
Joanna BLAU
Nava KAPLINSKY
R. MARKOVSKY
B. WOLF Research team, Tel Aviv University

Abstract

The present study tries to link some demographic, social, psychological and attitudinal variables of drug abuse. The findings were centred around the readiness of secondary school youth in Israel to be involved in drugs and their active searching for drug involvement. A dependent variable based on five indices of drug involvement was constructed. Et was then related to parental control, peer involvement in drugs, sex differentiation and membership in youth movements. A bi-modal high involvement curve was found, the first mode consisting of youth of low socio-economic strata who are drop-outs, who associate with outside peer groups as an alternative to their shaky and diffused families and lack of involvement in school life. The other mode consists of youth with a higher socioeconomic background who are involved with drugs due to their desire for new hedonistic and emotional experiences. Their openness to experiment with drugs is a corollary to their involvement within a peer group which condones and legitimizes narcotics as well as any experiences which irrespective of their source, provide "a good high". There is a sub-group within this group which would be involved with drugs as a partial escape from personal problems.

Introduction

The present study is a sequal to the epidemiological pilot study (Shoham, Geva, Kliger and Chai, 1974) which tried to link some demographic, social, psychological and attitudinal variables with drug abuse in Israel.

The findings in this study were centred around the readiness of youth to be involved with drugs and their active searching for drug involvement. Consequently, the dependent variables in our present study are drug involvement which we shall define later and examine their links with the various relevant independent variables.

Our main aim in the present study is to describe the population of youth who are involved with drugs and compare them with those who are not, construe some initial profiles of drug involved youth and link them to demographic, attitudinal and socio-economic variables. Hopefully, this study could provide an initial diagnostic pattern by comparing youth who are ready to be involved with drugs with youth who are not so inclined.

Research method

The research sample consisted of 776 boys and girls studying in the 9th to 12th grades (age groups 14 to 18) drawn from 8 schools. The schools were chosen so that they represented a wide range of types of school, of socio-economic levels, familial background, ethnic origin of parents and geographical distribution within the country. Three schools were vocational schools, two comprehensive schools which had both vocational training and humanistic studies, two schools were only humanistic and one was a religious school. The sample represents large urban centres (5 schools) and developing towns (2 schools). One school was a boarding school. Because of the sampling method of the schools we may regard the sample of students as representing in a proper manner the various populations of boys and girls in secondary schools of Israel.

The interview was conducted by the administration of a questionnaire to each class as a group. The students were told that the study was being carried out by Tel Aviv University and that its aim was to find out what the students know about drugs and their use. The attitude of the majority of the students to the study was serious. The administrator of the questionnaire stayed in the classroom until the last of the students finished answering the questionnaire in order to explain those items that were not clear to them. The administration of the questionnaire lasted for an hour and a half in each class and students collaborated willingly.

The following are some distributions of the population which represent the main descriptive parameters of the research population. (All figures are in percentages.)

CHARACTERISTICS OF THE SAMPLE: PERCENTAGE DISTRIBUTION OF VARIABLES

1.
Sex
   
 
Boys:
61.2  
 
Girls:
38.8  
2.
Age
   
 
14:
9.5  
 
15:
32.2  
 
16:
28.7  
 
17:
18.3  
 
18:
5.2  
 
Not reported:
6.1  
3.
Origin
   
 
Israel:
82.7  
 
Eastern Europe:
2.8  
 
Western Europe:
1.7  
 
Asia:
3.1  
 
North Africa:
6.1  
 
Other:
3.6  
4.
Origin of parents
Father
Mother
 
Israel:
13.0 18.7
 
Eastern Europe:
26.4 20.4
 
Western Europe:
7.0 7.1
 
Asia:
21.6 22.2
 
North Africa:
27.3 26.5
 
Others:
4.7 5.1
5.
Education level of parents
Father
Mother
 
Elementary or less:
21.9 23.1
 
Secondary (but not complete):
18.7 20.6
 
Secondary:
23.8 26.5
 
Technical or commercial:
5.9 4.4
 
Academic:
11.0 6.6
 
Not reported or unknown:
18.9 18.8
6.
Profession of father
   
 
Executives, contractors, etc.:
14.4  
 
Merchants and retailers:
6.8  
 
Teachers and technicians
4.3  
 
Civl servants:
6.8  
 
Salesmen:
1.7  
 
Transportation workers:
10.7  
 
Professional workers:
6.8  
 
Manual workers:
10.4  
 
Agricultural workers:
5.7  
 
Not working or not reported:
32.4  
7.
Parental relationship
   
 
Married to each other:
90.6  
 
Divorced or separated:
3.1  
 
Only one parent alive:
4.5  
 
Not reported
1.8  
8.
Employment of parents
Father
Mother
 
Full employment:
83.0 29.3
 
Part time employment:
3.4 13.0
 
Retired:
2.1 0.5
 
Unemployed:
1.4 0.6
 
Housewife:
-
51.5
 
Not reported:
10.1
5.1

INVOLVEMENT WITH CANNABIS

(Dependent variable)

Five dependent variables have been constructed in order to measure the rates of involvement with hashish, various narcotic pills, cigarettes and alcohol. We shall present the method of construction of these dependent variables and the interrelationship between them. However, in the present report we are dealing with one dependent variable only, i.e. involvement with cannabis, mainly hashish. In subsequent reports we shall deal with the findings relating to the other dependent variables.

The index for involvement with cannabis was achieved by a weighted aggregate of the following five binary items of information (the weight appears in parentheses after the item):

  1. The subject(s) used cannabis once or more (5) or never used cannabis (0).

  2. Subject procured cannabis for the first time by purchasing or through a friend (4) or never bought or received cannabis (0).

  3. If subject would have wanted to buy cannabis he would have known where to look for it (3) or he would not have known where to look for it (0).

  4. Subject knew the price and the quantity unit by which cannabis is sold (2) or he did not know it (0).

  5. Subject knew various names of narcotics (1) or could not specify their names (0).

The point-biserial part-whole correlations of these five items ranged between 0.18 (knowledge of price) to 0.60 (actual use of cannabis). The possible range of values in this scale is from -15. The mean which was computed in this scale across all subjects was 3.23 and the standard deviation was 2.75.

It should be pointed out that the scale of drug involvement was deemed by us to be more reliable than direct questions about drug use, which, presumably, are highly affected by social desirability tendencies. In our sample, for instance, 3.5 per cent reacted positively to the question: "Where did you get hold of hashish?" 1 The questions relating to direct knowledge of drugs revealed that 2.7 per cent had this direct knowledge. These percentages are therefore, less reliable than our scale of involvement with hashish which signifies the gradual contact with cannabis, so that the high involvement would also indicate higher probabilities of its actual use although not stated openly in answer to direct questions. This scale of involvement is also in line with the various theories of association with patterns of deviant behaviour (E. H. Sutherland and D. R. Cressey, 1970) as well as identification with deviant roles (D. Glaser, 1956).

INVOLVEMENT WITH NARCOTIC PILLS, ALCOHOL AND CIGARETTES

The other dependent variables construed were the rates of involvement with narcotic pills based on five items, with part-whole correlations ranging from 0.10 to 0.65, involvement with alcohol (6 items, alpha reliability = 0.83) and cigarettes (a single item). The interrelationship between the various dependent variables measured by product-moment correlations are presented in table 1.

The figures in table 1 relate to the sample of subjects who reported that they have no friends involved with hashish (N = 618). The correlations for 45 subjects who reported friends involved in hashish were higher, ranging between 0.36 to 0.68. Presumably, as can be seen from table 1, there is a certain overlapping between the dependent variables.

This important finding shows that those youths who were found to be highly involved with drugs tended to be involved in alcohol and cigarettes as well. This upholds the general view expressed by us in our previous report that the most conspicuous group of factors seems to be the openness to involvement with experimentation with narcotics so that the barrier between legality and illegality is not so crucial in the motivation of the youth as is the general willingness to be involved with narcotics as such coupled with the non-normativeness of the behaviour. It should be stressed that our population ranged from 14 to 18 and in Israel drinking and smoking for this age group is still considered to be non-normative. Consequently, the non-legitimization of the norms relating to drinking and smoking has a similar effect to the non-legitimization of norms relating to drug use. This should have a wide application both to the understanding of the etiology of drug involvement as well as to the measures taken to prevent it. The law as such does not seem to be the crucial dividing line between the normative and the non-normative behaviour of the youth in relation to narcotics. The more important aspect is how the youth regard non-normative behaviour as defined by themselves vis-a-vis the proscription of their elders and the normative system at large.

1 The studies conducted previously by Shoham el al. (1974) found the self-reported use of hashish to be 3 per cent, by Peled et al., 5 per cent.

TABLE 1

Correlation coefficients between various measures of addictions

 

Involvement with

 

Pills (1)

Cigarettes (2)

Alcohol (3)

1.
0.85 0.30 0.17
2.
  0.25 0.12
3.
    0.31

However, in spite of the overlap it is obvious that we are dealing here with different indices which signify different types of involvement with drugs which presumably share a common underlying factor. This is the reason for our separate treatment of the various drug involvements in separate reports.

FACTORS ASSOCIATED WITH CANNABIS INVOLVEMENT

(Independent and mediating variables)

In order to investigate the factors associated with involvement with cannabis and to estimate the assumption that there exist differential patterns of drug involvement, resulting from different underlying dynamics, we have constructed five scales, based on the information obtained from the questionnaire. These scales related to the following subjects: personal problems, attitudes towards drugs, delinquency, involvement in typical youth activities and parental control. Item analyses pertaining to these scales are presented in tables 2 to 6.

TABLE 2

Parental control scale

Some parents have rules for their teenage children, while others do not. (Check each item for which your parents have definite rules.)
Corrected item-total correlation
Time for being in at night
0.36
Homework
0.33
Time spent watching television
0.23
Against associating with certain boys
0.43
Against associating with certain girls
0.41
Eating dinner with the family
0.22
Helping around the house
0.29
Against smoking
0.48
Against drinking alcohol (brandy, whisky, arak or vodka)
0.41
Against using drugs
0.38
Dress and hair rules
0.15
Alpha reliability
0.68
Mean
4.00
Standard deviation
2.49
Scale range
0 to 11

TABLE 3

Involvement with youth activities scale

How frequently do you -
Corrected item-total correlation
Watch television?
0.35
Listen to records with friends?
0.53
Attend parties?
0.52
Associate with friends?
0.48
Read for pleasure?
0.35
Alpha reliability
0.69
Mean
13.19
Standard deviation
3.62
Scale range
5 to 20

TABLE 4

Delinquency scale

Have you ever done any of the following?
Corrected item-total correlation
Been sent out of a classroom by a teacher
0.33
Stolen things of little value (worth less than IL10)
0.36
Stolen things of some value (worth IL10-IL200)
0.24
Been drunk
0.27
Cheated in a class test
0.28
Run away from home or stayed out at night without your parents' permission
0.30
Driven without a driver's license
0.31
Taken a .car for a run without the owner's permission
0.29
Damaged intentionally something that did not belong to you
0.35
Stolen things of large value (worth over IL200)
0.24
Held up or robbed a person
0.20
Given yourself a drug injection
0.21
Caused a disturbance in a cinema even after having been asked to stop
0.22
Beaten up another child
0.35
Alpha reliability
0.63
Mean
2.49
Standard deviation
1.78
Scale range
1 to 13

TABLE 5

Attitudes towards drugs

 
Corrected item-total correlation
Do you think hashish should be legalized?
0.37
Do you think heroin should be legalized?
0.26
One should use drugs at least once in order' to know something about them
0.34
It is the right of the individual with personal problems to use drugs in order to make things easier for himself
0.35
There should be a strong reaction against people using hashish
0.51
Drugs lead to moral deterioration
0.52
Drug use shows irresponsibility
0.46
Alpha reliability
0.68
Mean
12.12
Standard deviation
4.63
Scale range
7 to 38

As can be seen, internal consistency reliabilities were quite satisfactory and ranged between 0.63 to 0.86. None of the items has a negative item total correlation and thus it was decided not to remove any of them. The items were scored in such a way that the higher the score in the scale the higher the personal problems, the liberal attitudes towards drugs, the number of delinquent acts, the involvement in youth activities and the parental control.

TABLE 6

Problems scale

 
Corrected item-total correlation
During the past year, how much have you been bothered or troubled by the following?
 
Feeling too tired to do things
0.57
Having trouble going to sleep or staying asleep
0.61
Feeling unhappy, sad or depressed
0.68
Feeling hopeless about the future
0.62
Feeling nervous or tense
0.66
Daydreaming
0.59
Worrying too much about things
0.64
Alpha reliability
0.86
Mean
10.64
Standard deviation
4.45
Scale range
7 to 21

Findings

One broad category of factors related to drug involvement are those linked with the home and relationships within the family. The second broad category is anchored on peer relationships. The conceptualization related to these two categories is presented in the following table 7 which incorporates the various relevant topics of our findings.

TABLE 7

Categories of factors associated with drug involvement

Family anchored factors
Peer anchored factors
Supervision by parents (high; low)
Friends involved with cannabis (nobody; several)
Education of father (elementary; secondary; tertiary)
Membership of youth movements (yes; no)
Parental attitudes towards drug use (agreement; opposition)
Involvement in youth activities (high; low)
Predominant socialization agent (father, mother, both parents equal)
 

In addition to these two categories we tried to ascertain the influence of demographic factors on drug involvement. These were sex, age, country of origin of the father, country of origin of the mother.

The ranking of two levels of high and low in the factors of "level of involvement with youth activities" and "supervision by parents" was done according to the median value in the respective scales. The factors in table 7 as well as the demographic factors were analysed by a series of one-way, two-way and three-way analyses of variance, the dependent variable always being the involvement in cannabis.

Analyses of variance with four factors have not been carried out because of the resultant empty cells in the analyses, and also because of the difficulties of interpreting a fourth order interaction effect.

FACTORS WHICH DID NOT CONTRIBUTE SIGNIFICANTLY TO CANNABIS INVOLVEMENT

Our main focus in the present report is on the way in which the family-home factors, peer factors and demographic factors differentiate between high and low involvement with cannabis. As an exclusionary introduction to the presentation of our findings we shall present first of all the factors which did not contribute significantly to the variation of involvement with cannabis, neither by themselves nor by interaction with other factors.

1. Parental attitude towards drug use

The mean involvement with cannabis scores of subjects who reported that their parents agreed to the laws against drugs was 3.31 (N=390) whereas the mean 25 of the subjects who reported that their parents opposed the laws against drugs was 2.88 (N=40). The rest of the subjects did not react to the question regarding parental attitude or did not know. The difference between the two group means is not significant. However, it is interesting to note that the direction of the response is contrary to the presumably expected one. The subjects who perceived their parents as more conservative in their attitudes towards drugs were those whose involvement with cannabis was greater than those who perceived their parents to be more liberal. This initially might be related to the former's rebellious attitude towards their more conservative parents.

2. Predominant socialization agent

This factor was not found to be significant. The means were for the group which had a more dominant father 3.34 (N=291), a more predominant mother 3.13 (N=228) and equally predominant parents 3.20 (N=232). The differences between these three means were not significant.

3. Age

The four age groups in our research population, as measured by the grades at school, were not found to be significantly different in their involvement with cannabis. Consequently, a claim that involvement with cannabis is positively related to the age of the subject is not upheld by our present findings.

The mean involvement with cannabis of grades 9, 10, 11 and 12 were 3.1, 3.2, 3.4 and 3.1 respectively.

4. Country of parents' origin

The parents were classified into four groups according to country of origin: native-born Israelis, Europeans, those from Asia and Africa, and those from the United States and Australia.

Involvement with cannabis was not found to be related to the ethnic background of the youngster as measured by the ethnic origin of father and mother. This shows that the drug involvement phenomenon which is a relatively new one in its widespread form in Israel, goes beyond the ethnic parameters which have been relevant in other studies concerning crime and deviance (S. Shoham, 1968; S. Shoham, N. Shoham, and A. Abd-el-Razek, 1970).

However, it should be pointed out that the largest segments of the drop-outs do not reach secondary school so that our research population would not include the hard core drop-outs and failures who have left elementary school many years before they were even eligible for secondary school. These would more probably have contributed to a higher percentage of the deviant and actual criminal groups which would not, naturally, be included in our present research populations. Amongst these more would also have belonged to the lower socio-economic strata which would coincide-with the second generation born locally of immigrant parents of Oriental and Middle Eastern origin. This would partially explain the fact that the origin of the parents did not contribute greatly to the variability of drug involvement in secondary schools.

TABLE 8

Mean involvement with cannabis

 

Origin of parents

 

Israel

Europe

America and Australia

Asia and Africa

Father
3.4 3.4 3.1 3.1
Mother
3.4 3.2 3.8 3.2

The over-all findings of the factors that have been found to be significantly related to drug involvement were as follows:

  1. The subjects who had friends who were involved with cannabis were themselves more involved in cannabis than subjects who had no friends who were thus involved.

  2. Subjects who were more severely supervised by parents were less involved with cannabis than those whose parents supervised them more slackly.

  3. Males were more involved than females.

  4. Subjects who were members of youth movements were more involved with cannabis than those who were not members.

  5. Four two-way interactions of the factors were found to be significant and in all of these the factor of "friends involved with cannabis" was one of the interacting factors. This factor was found to be in significant interaction with sex, the supervision by parents, education of father and involvement in youth activities. With the factor of membership in youth movements the interaction of this factor was insignificant.

  6. Two three-way interactions were found to be significant: friends involved in cannabis by the education of father, by sex and the interaction of friends involved in cannabis by education of the father, by supervision by parents. 2

The following is a presentation and discussion of the details of the significant factors associated with drug involvement.

1. Friends involved in cannabis and supervision by parents

The mean scores relating to the 2 x 2 analysis of variance are presented in .

The least involvement in cannabis was found in subjects with high parental supervision who have no friends involved with cannabis and the combination of low parental control and friends involved with cannabis is characterized by a considerable rise in the measure of cannabis involvement. However, the two factors are not often cumulative in their effects, as can be seen by the significant interaction effect and accompanying mean differences. Parental supervision is more effective when the subjects have friends who use hashish (mean difference = 3.00) and scarcely effective when subjects have no friends who use hashish (mean difference = 0.16, not significant).

2 However, since in a large portion of the cells of these analyses of item No. 6 there were very few cases (less than four) the discussion of these findings should be avoided, in order to minimize unreliable conclusions.

TABLE 9

Mean "involvement in cannabis" (scores and anova results): parental supervision and friends involved with cannabis

 

Parental supervision

Friends involved

Low

High

Members difference

Total

Several
7.20 (N = 25)
4.20 (N = 20)
3.00 5.87
None
3.01 (N = 292)
2.85 (N = 326)
0.16 2.92
Several/None difference
4.19 1.35
2.84 a
2.95 a
Total
3.35 2.92
0.43 b
3.13

a F (Friends involved) = 54.48, F (interaction) = 12.77, df = 1/659, p 0.001.

b F = 3.24, df = 1/659, p<.10.

The findings divide our population into two groups: those whose drug involvement is related to association with peers who are involved with hashish and those whose peers are not. This, in a sense supports the classic theory concerning drug involvement and delinquency which has already been supported by our previous study (S. Shoham et al., 1974) that drug involvement is a social phenomenon of differential identification and association and learning within the context of a group. An important finding of the present study is that the normative control of parents seems to be one of the most forceful barriers against drug involvement even with those subjects who were associated with peers who were involved with drugs. This means that the primary socialization within the nuclear family provides a barrier against drug involvement even if the youths' peers were normally involved in drugs and related activities. This partially supports Shoham's contention in his study on conflict situations and delinquents' solutions (S. Shoham, 1966) which anchors on the socialization within the family and the provision of normative barriers against association with devient peers by parental attitudes which have been internalized by the child.

The prominent profile of a non-drug involved youth is one who professes to have strong parental control. Even if he is tempted to be associated with peers who are involved with drugs, parental control against involvement seems to be an effective barrier.

2. Sex differentiation in drug involvement

Table 10 displays the fact that boys tend to be slightly more involved with cannabis than girls. But the main difference lies in the differentiation of involvement with peers. Boys whose peers are involved with hashish are themselves more involved with the drug than girls. This could be related to the greater exposure in Israeli society of boys to their peer culture than of girls. Girls in Israel are still more controlled by their families than are boys. This might be related both to the Oriental Jewish and East European Jewish tradition of protecting a girl from outside influences more than a boy.

TABLE 10

Mean involvement with cannabis (scores and anova results): sex and friends involved

Friends involved

Boys

Girls

Several
6.77 (N = 26)
4.63 (N = 19)
None
3.03 (N = 370)
2.80 (N = 239)

F sex = 2.98, df = 1/650, p < 0.10.

F interaction = 8.52, df = 1/650, p < 0.011.

3. Education of father

By itself this factor was not significant but it did interact with the factor of friends involved with cannabis (f = 4.15, df = 2/532, p <0.05). For the small group of subjects who have friends involved with cannabis, the trend is clear - the higher the educational level, the lower the involvement (see table 11).

However, for the larger group of subjects, who have no friends involved with cannabis, the finding relating to the education of the father has shown that the highest control and a consequent lower involvement in drug use is with the middle-range education of the father. This indeed is the profile of the conforming middle-class who would display the image of the so-called "silent majority" trying to conform as much as they can to prevailing rules and mores. They are of course, strongly against the drug culture which to them is equivalent to deviance and a predisposition to crime.

We have therefore a bi-modal curve of drug involvement of youth from a higher social status as judged by the education of the father, low parental control and hence the children seek involvement with peers who would in a way provide them with an outlet to their personal problems within the peer group. On the other hand, the lower social strata as judged by the lower education of the father coupled by low parental control, would signify the drop-outs, those who are punished in school and consequently would associate themselves with outside peer groups as an alternative to their shaky and diffused families and lack of involvement in school life. A summary hypothesis which we would like to test further is that the higher social group is involved with drugs as a sequel to their personal problems, whereas the lower social group is involved with drugs as a corollary of the slight and diffuse institutional hold on their leisure time and lack of control in the family. Drug involvement is one alternative receptacle to their expulsion from the major social institution, i.e. the school, which occupies most of the time, attention and energy of those who regularly attend school and are more or less adjusted to it.

TABLE 11

Mean involvement with cannabis (scores and anova results)

Father's education

Friends involved

Elementary

Secondary

Tertiary

Several
6.67 (N = 9)
5.94 (N = 17)
4.18 (N = 11
None
3.02 (N = 134)
2.67 (N = 268)
3.16 (N = 105)
Difference: Several/None
3.65 3.27 1.02
4. Youth movements and drug involvement

As one over-all result we may point out the striking finding that youngsters who are members of a youth movement are more involved with cannabis than those who are not. The mean score of subjects who were members of youth movements was 3.42 (N=330), the mean of subjects who were in the past members of youth movements was 3.23 (N = 240) and the mean of subjects who never belonged to youth movements was 2.84 (N=177). One-way analysis of variance revealed a non-significant over-all effect (F = 2.68, df-2/746, p <0.07). However, when the two most extreme groups were contrasted, namely members and non-members of youth movements, the mean difference was significant (D=0.58, t=2.31, df=744, p 0.05). The data were further analysed by a series of two- and three-way analyses of variance, in each of which the factor of youth movements was presented by two groups - members, and non-members.

The analyses revealed a rather important finding: the youth movement factor did not interact with any of the other factors. The implication of this finding which is presented in is clear; the effect of youth movements upon their members in the direction of higher involvement with cannabis is independent of a series of home, peer and demographic factors. One exception to the general trend should be pointed out: subjects who were members of youth movements and had a poorly educated father were less involved with cannabis than their non-member counterparts.

The results presented so far tie up with the undercurrents in Israeli society which have been in operation since the establishment of the State of Israel. Youth movements were basically attended by the elite of the Jewish Yishuv before 1948. They were fiercely ideological and a youngster who attended this youth movement was supposed eventually to fulfil his ideologies by joining one of the kibbutzim and fulfilling in other ways the ideological aims of the Jewish community in the country. The parents of the youngsters of today who do attend youth movements are of higher socio-economic status and belong presumably to the strata of the Jewish community at the end of the British Mandate who were either themselves members of youth movements or at least subscribed to the ideas professed by these movements. The metamorphosis in the ideological structure of the socio-cultural (elites in Israel is also manifest in our present findings. The parents of higher education and presumably of higher socio-economic status, who "did well" during the years, and became the managerial power and economic leaders of the country, have their children, at least formally, follow their footsteps. However, the contents of the activities within the youth movement change completely in line with the changing ideology and the contents of the values of their parents. The hedonistic atmosphere and the cult of immediacy have become part of the youth culture as apparent within the youth movement. When the ideological content of the youth movements waned, became shallow and less intensive, drug involvement became one of the contents of the youth movement activities which were enhanced by the fact that the peer groups as a whole, i.e. the youth movement, is subject to the same social change as the normative system of their elders. Consequently, lip service is paid to the old values and ideologies but in essence the framework of the youth movement serves as a receptacle only for peer group alliances and as the habitat of the youth movement which is also a convenient location for all kinds of deviant activities including drug involvement.

TABLE 12

Mean involvement with cannabis (scores and anova results): youth movement, home, peer and demographic factors

(N in parentheses)

 

Youth Movement

 

F values

Factors

Members

Non-members

Members/non-members difference

Youth

Interaction

Father's education
         
Elementary
3.06 (63) 3.58 (50)
-0.52
   
Secondary
3.52 (158) 2.61 (70) 0.91 2.47 2.58
Tertiary
3.57 (49) 2.92 (26) 0.65    
Origin of father
         
Israel
3.66 (50) 2.40 (15) 1.26    
Europe
3.54 (108) 2.98 (56) 0.56    
Asia and Africa
3.31 (160) 2.86 (99) 0.45
5.07 a
0.30
America and Australia
3.67 (3) 2.75 (4) 0.92    
Origin of mother
         
Israel
3.34 (65) 3.56 (25)
-0.22
   
Europe
3.39 (92) 2.71 (49) 0.78    
Asia and Africa
3.49 (160) 2.68 (96) 0.81
4.57 a
1.71
America and Australia
3.00 (7) 5.67 (3)
-2.67
   
Age
         
9th grade
3.23 (132) 2.33 (48) 0.90    
10th grade
3.47 (116) 3.00 (49) 0.47    
11th grade
3.80 (65) 2.98 (55) 0.82
6.40 a
0.41
12th grade
3.12 (17) 3.16 (25)
-0.04
   
Sex
         
Boys
3.54 (210) 2.92 (114) 0.62    
Girls
3.23 (114) 2.59 (59) 0.64
6.08 a
0.00
Parental supervision
         
Low
3.55 (56) 2.89 (101) 0.66    
High
3.30 (174) 2.76 (76) 0.54
5.70 a
0.06
Friends involved itt cannabis
         
None
3.11 (276) 2.56 (138) 0.55    
Several
5.75 (20) 5.11 (9) 0.64
4.75 a
0.00
Involvement in youth activities
         
Low
3.40 (134) 2.64 (105) 0.76    
High
3.43 (196) 3.13 (72) 0.30
4.87 a
0.50

a P < 0.05.

5. Involvement with youth activities

Involvement with youth activities was not found to have a significant main effect upon involvement with cannabis, but together with the factor of friends involved with cannabis a significant interaction is apparent (table 13). The combination of non-involvement in youth activities and having friends involved with cannabis seems to result in a very high degree of involvement with cannabis.

TABLE 13

Mean involvement with cannabis (scores and anova results)

(Youth activities by friends involved)

 

Involvement with youth activities

Friends involved

Low

High

Several
7.60 (N = 10)
5.37 (N = 35)
None
2.90 (N = 296)
2.95 (N = 322)

F (interaction) = 5.40, df = 1/659, p < 0.05.

In its inhibiting effect, this factor is similar to the home-anchored factor of parental supervision. The youth who is exposed to friends using drugs is less liable to be tempted to use drugs by himself to the extent that he is more involved with youth activities such as watching television, listening to records with friends, attending parties, associating with friends and reading for pleasure.

6. Delinquency, attitudes towards drugs and drug involvement

Delinquency and attitudes towards drugs cannot be classified as home-anchored or peer-anchored variables. In addition, these variables, unlike the other factors investigated in the present study, might be conceptualized not only as mediating variables but also as consequences of drug involvement. Since the kind of relation between delinquency, attitudes towards drugs and drug involvement is rather obscure and controversial, it was preferred to present their intercorrelations instead of adopting the ANOVA statistical technique.

The data presented in the previous sections support the distinction between two groups-subjects who have friends involved with drugs, and subjects who do not have such friends. These two groups differ from each other not only in the degree of drug involvement but also in the impact of home-peer and demographic factors upon drug involvement. The intercorrelations presented in further support this distinction. Permissive attitudes towards drugs and reported deviancy are positively related, inasmuch as the subjects have friends involved with drugs, while no such relation was found in the other group. In both groups, involvement with cannabis is slightly related to delinquency, but in the smaller group the correlation did not reach any significance.

TABLE 14

Intercorrelations between delinquency, attitudes towards drugs and involvement with cannabis

 

Friends involved with cannabis (N = 45>

Friends not involved with cannabis (N = 618)

 

(1)

(2)

(1)

(2)

1.
Involvement with cannabis
-
-
-
-
2.
Delinquency
0.20
-
0.19 ***
-
3.
Attitudes towards drugs
0.20
0.45 ***
0.12 0.07

P < 0.001.

The more a youth is involved in a drug-involved peer group, the more will he advocate the liberalization of drug use. Overt guilt feelings for their involvement in drugs did not seem to be displayed by our drug involved subjects. On the contrary they were advocating the legitimization of their own and their peers' illicit drug involvement.

Bibliography

Glaser, D., "Criminality Theories and Behavioral Images", American Journal of Sociology, vol. 61 (March), pp. 433-444,1956.

Shoham, S., Crime and Social Deviation, Chicago, Regnery Co., 1966.

Shoham, S., "Culture Conflict as a Frame of Reference for Research in Criminology and Social Deviation" in Crime and Culture Wolfgang, M. (Ed.) John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1968.

Shoham, S., N. Shoham and A. Abd-el-Razek, "Immigration, Ethnicity and Ecology as Related to Juvenile Delinquency in Israel", in Israel Studies in Criminology, Shoham S. (Ed.) Gomeh, Tel Aviv, 1970.

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