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The Underage Drinking Problem And How To Prevent Youths From Consuming Alcohol Underage. A Perspective View Of Parents, Law Enforcement, Bar Owners, And College Students

856 words - 3 pages

The ongoing act of underage drinking has been a difficult social problem for parents and community members, bar owners and servers, law enforcement officials, and college students to address. As a college student at Oswego State University, I have noticed underage drinking and the violent actions of students that arise from the consumption of alcohol. The entire situation appalls me.In reading the article entitled, "Taking Aim at Underage Drinking" and "Punish Underage Drinkers More, Bar Owner Suggests", I perceive that there are others who feel the same way. The article mentions several groups of people that are involved in combating the illegal underage drinking. The article highlights the many groups that are involved in the implementation, enforcement, and reform of the underage drinking laws. Bar owner, Diane Broadwell, states, "We know the laws. It's how they're enforced...that is the stickler." Area bar owners feel that law enforcement officials tend to deviate from the actual law and relay false information, as stated by Diane Broadwell, "You can ask three police officers the law and get three different answers." Furthermore, bar owners have said, "...the police are overzealous in their patrols and uncover 'sting' operations at area taverns, particularly those catering to Oswego State University students." Many bar owners feel that the police do not work with them in correcting the underage problem, by issuing "...frivolous citations and referrals to the state." It is perceived by the reader at this point that the problem lies within law enforcement officials. However, at a community meeting, law enforcement official, Mann rebuttals against the accusations by outlining the responsibilities of the bar owners. He further outlines that the responsibility to stop underage drinking "lies with the person who is actually serving the alcohol." These people can include any of the establishment's employees. Additionally, Mann states that the prevention does not stop with the sale of alcohol, but directing bar employees to prevent other legal patrons from passing on alcoholic beverages to underage persons. Mann also went on to discuss the other offenses that may arise from the sale of alcohol to minors, such as having a disorderly premise. Mann told bar owners may be subjected to these charges if their establishment "...allows gambling, prostitution, fights and brawls, or obscene or lewd entertainment." The reader is informed at this point that bar owners' awareness of the illegal activity that occurs on their premises is the solution to the underage drinking problem. The article also discusses the fact that underage college students are not penalized enough at this point, when caught consuming...

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