This semester I transferred from James Madison University in Virginia, a stridently conservative haven, to the liberal oasis that is UVM. Despite this drastic change, which I thoroughly enjoy, one thing is impeccably similar: students partake in the consumption of alcohol, just like on campuses across the nation. Mmm, delicious alcohol. Naturally, this begs the question, “Johnny, why do colleges spend so much time, money, and effort in the War on Booze, which they have lost before the semester begins?”
We can place the blame on the handful of fiends who are controlled by the “Let’s pound some beers!” mentality.
All it takes is one vomit/urination combination, say, in the fountain across from Old Mill, for the administration to get all riled up and lash out against a regularly enjoyable social lubricant. Alcohol, you being a favorable associate of mine, I will not let them tear you down!
America is completely insane on the issue of underage drinking. Thousands of arrests occur yearly nationwide for underage drinking, the culprits being mainly students of higher education who will eventually control the nation when they become lawyers, doctors, business people, the works. If one looks to Europe, these arrests are virtually non-existent, as the drinking age in most countries is sixteen or in some cases, such as Portugal, a legal drinking age is absent. In America, obviously, we’ve got to be 21.
I am 20 years old. I drink alcohol! I enjoy it! There’s nothing like getting off work and coming home to a fridge full of cold, delicious ales, porters, stouts, and lagers, grabbing one, popping off the cap and reclining on my couch. I can then comfortably post up to read or listen to music or watch a movie or whatever.
Then there’s the social aspect – what better way to relax and catch up and share some stories and laughs or get to know someone then over a case of Long Trail Harvest Ale? Well, a case of Big Sky Brewing Company’s Moose Drool Brown Ale might be better than that. Or, I guess you could go to a campus substance-free game night, and play some air hockey or something like that. So it’s the out-of-control fiends that ruin it for the connoisseurs. You won’t catch me pounding a beer, doing a keg stand, or taking a beer bong.
No, I’m not that hard-core. But you will catch me quenching my thirst when my gullet calls for it. Everything in moderation! I don’t think the administration accomplishes anything by preaching to students to avoid this delectable substance altogether. And I think it’s an insult to tell kids they need to go to classes where people should tell them “know your limit” and all the regurgitated inane nonsense that people can only attain through experience.
I apologize to those out there who have lost a loved one by means of alcohol related accidents- that is most unfortunate. But, responsible drinkers should not take the brunt of the situation due to lapse in other people’s judgment. This is America. The land of the free. But I have to wait until May to go into a bar and order a pint of sweet, delicious nectar of the gods, because by then, I will be ready to drink, whereas now I am “not ready” to partake of the sacrament.
If you want to know how terribly alcohol can affect you, buy a bottle of Crown Royal and make yourself a whisky sour, grab a book by Charles Bukowski- Factotum would be a good choice- and see the depths that alcohol can make you sink to, presented in an exaggerated and humorous light. You will laugh your ass off, but you will see how alcohol has the power to disable normal functioning. Pamphlets and alcohol-awareness lectures can’t paint nearly as animated a picture as someone like Bukowski can. Cheers, Burlington.