Letter to the Editor

BY DI READERS | APRIL 12, 2010 7:30 AM

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21-ordinance needed

On April 5, the Daily Iowan led with a story about how wonderfully things worked in Lincoln, Neb., where the city allows kids as young as 16 into the bars.

However, after the jump was the point that no one under 21 goes into the bars.

Also buried on page 5A in the April 5 edition was an article about how a 21-ordinance had succeeded in Charleston, Ill. The placement of this story makes it clear that the DI did not plan on most people reading that story, nor did the editors think most people would read beyond the front page of the Lincoln article, which painted its approach as a blessing.

In the next day’s issue, an editorial was published contending that Iowa City should be more like Lincoln and that our City Council is acting “prematurely.” There are two things wrong with that idea:

• The University of Nebraska-Lincoln does not have the reputation of being a party school, so people are not paying out-of-state tuition in Nebraska for the sole purpose of being able to party.

• While the City Council may not have worked with the bar owners as much as the DI Editorial Board would like, the bar owners have not made any changes to curb underage drinking in their establishments since the 21-ordinance was last on the ballot.

Underage and binge drinking are problems in Iowa City. They’re also a reason some students come to this university. They know there’s a party scene, and they will likely get away with drinking under age. I supported the 21-ordinance in 2007, and I will support it again if it goes to a vote in November. Something needs to change.

Kyle Phillips
UI graduate

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