Cocaine Charges Signal Amish Crisis

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Rumschpringes -- the "wild oats" interludes giving teenagers latitude to party before they submit to the religious strictures of the adult community -- have become the source of a mortal threat to the culture of Pennsylvania's Amish community. Abner King Stoltzfus, 23, and Abner Stoltzfus, 24 (not related) Thursday became the first Amish people ever to be arraigned on narcotics charges, after they allegedly collaborated with members of the Pagans biker gang to deal cocaine and methamphetamine at barn dances for rumschpringing Amish kids. TIME correpondent Nadya Labi notes that while the teenage time out from the conservative Amish culture has traditionally served as a safety valve for the energies of the community's young people, it may also become the portal through which the corrupting ways of the outside world enter Amish life.