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Letters to the Editor

BY DI READERS | DECEMBER 17, 2009 7:30 AM

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Students’ alcohol outlook must change

Logic. It is a tough collegiate class to pass, but it acts as a powerful tool to solve real-world problems.

The editorial in The Daily Iowan on Dec. 7 (“The comprehensive solutions to solving the drinking problem”) looks more like a political platform containing unrealistic goals. The drinking issue will never be solved if we insist on the status quo, Band-Aid approaches. We must cultivate the root of the problem in order to avoid deadly progression in the future.

We cannot ignore the fact that the university, the police, and the bars are businesses that revolve around money. The university faces tough budget cuts that consume officials’ attention. The police enjoy poking fun at intoxicated minors while stacking hundreds of dollars in drinking citations. The bars will continue to serve regardless of your age or level of intoxication. The facts are a stubborn thing. The only way to decrease the amount of drinking comes within a student. We must change the thinking.

“A man will always be judged by the amount of alcohol he can consume,” Bryan Brown says to the ambitious Tom Cruise in Cocktail. This is our generation; this is our outlook. Posting obstacles in our way of drinking motivates us to hurdle higher, faster, and stronger. It’s like when your parents put your Nerf gun on top of the refrigerator — you’re climbing that fridge, no questions asked. Our generational approach to drinking resembles the marijuana fixation in the ’60s and ’70s. The solution? Lessen the importance of essentially a number, age, to determine your readiness of alcohol consumption.

Allow teenagers to mature with alcohol as they mature. Rid the restrictions surrounding alcohol that motivate adolescents to abuse it. Gradually lessen the regulations that bolster the aura of underage drinking to ensure the safety of future generations.

Mark Lavery
UI sophomore

The dangers of alcohol

Bravo to The Daily Iowan, Danny Valentine, and Christy Aumer for the Dec. 7 article “The siren song of alcohol.” More than five years ago, I suggested that Iowa Public Television do a “Friday Night Follies” show from downtown Iowa City with video documentation of the drunkenness, vomiting, public urination, fights, and other misbehavior that has become such a common feature of our late-night scene.

A little public exposure goes a long way toward showing what the problem is — for our police and ambulance personnel, for innocent downtown residents and visitors, and for the alcohol abusers themselves.

Jim Walters
Iowa City resident


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