Images of black crack babies
screeching and trembling, supposedly from crack withdrawal permeated the mainstream consciousness.
They are similar to codes such as "welfare queen," which came to mean young black women using the system to elevate their own status, and "crack babies
," understood as black babies permanently damaged by their mother's selfish indulgence with drugs.
He cites the last three generations for negligent parenting and points to leniency and a degradation of family morality as the reasons behind "today's homeless mentally unbalanced drug dependent crack babies
unwed mothers welfare dependents abandoned children jail inmates functional illiterates 'ADHD' children and other physically and mentally maladjusted individuals."
Media begin making wildly exaggerated claims about "crack babies
No longer does talk about crack babies
or Colombian drug lords dominate the nightly news.
There are no images of "crack dads" and "crack babies
" in the media like those of women who harm developing fetuses with drug and alcohol use, Daniels said in February at a meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science held in Boston.
Indeed, long-term studies of those infamous crack babies
has found that their in utero drug exposure led to some behavioral problems, but not to the grotesque abnormalities predicted in the 1980s.
Now in its 10th year, findings from that earlier study suggest that fears about a lost generation of "crack babies
" were unfounded, Lester said.
Bunch, Kaneya for his coverage of drug treatment in Cook County and Sarah Karp for her investigation of "crack babies
To briefly review the case, in 1995, the South Carolina Supreme Court held that a mother's ingestion of cocaine during her third trimester constituted "criminal child neglect." To combat the epidemic of "crack babies
," MUSC instituted the following policy:
Increased state intervention into the lives of pregnant women was accompanied by an explosion of rhetoric that scrutinized mothers and chastised them for failing to live up to social standards.(37) This backdrop of mother-blaming and regulation helps to explain the discovery of prenatal substance abuse as a social problem in the late 1980s, the news media's inflammatory rhetoric about crack babies
, and the public's alarm about this so-called epidemic.
Some went so far as to claim that crack babies
would have to be written off as a "lost generation" or a "biological underclass."(34) But today, there is practically a scientific consensus that cocaine does no more damage to infants than cigarette smoking.(35) In one of the first large comprehensive studies to refute the long-held belief that cocaine-exposed babies often suffer major birth defects, University of Florida researchers found that 75 percent of the babies studied had no major problems, the same as a group of babies who were not exposed to cocaine in utero.(36) Similarly, at Einstein Medical Center, researchers have been tracking the development of more than 200 poor inner-city children since 1989.