Get your own back

Picture a typical weekend night: You and your friends go off to someone’s room to hang out. Later in the evening, someone knocks on the door.Soon, you are headed to court, have to explain everything to your parents and may even be kicked out of school.This happens weekly at the University of Vermont and most universities across the nation. The question is, who is to blame? Are the police being too stringent, or are the students being too wild?In 2009, there were 268 alcohol violations and 349 drug violations on campus, according to uvm.edu. That is the highest combination of the two this decade. In addition, 94 students were sent to detoxification in the fall semester 2009. Ironically, it seems that both parties blame each other for these staggering statistics. The police and the University want to keep an orderly campus free from the distractions and potential harm of drugs and alcohol.Many students, on the other hand, feel as if they would be missing out on the college experience if they did not partake in such activities. The University has tried to reconcile their differences by using half-hearted policies such as the “Got Your Back” policy and promoting programs such as Alcohol.edu.Unfortunately, the “Got Your Back” policy is not in written form in the student guidebook and thus does not have any real instructions for use.Furthermore, Alcohol.edu is seen by many as incredibly patronizing and is merely a repetition of past years spent in health class learning about the effects of drugs and alcohol. What the police, the students and the University all seem to forget is that college students are adults.The students are capable of making coherent decisions about their lifestyles. They can choose to drink or do drugs or not, but they also must realize that there are consequences to their actions.The police and the University must realize that many students act childish because they are being treated like children. If college is to prepare you for real life, then the University should consider making it more realistic.Do not overly shelter the students from the dangers that they will soon encounter after graduation, and in return do not sit on the fence about how to punish them if they truly commit a crime worth punishing.At this point in the education process, students are held accountable for their work. There are no excuses and no one to make sure you do your work. Why shouldn’t life at college be governed by this same set of rules?