A4 djc edits - James Corcoran Paul Blomeyer WRIT 140...

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James Corcoran Paul Blomeyer WRIT 140; Section 64320 11/28/10 Essay #4 The Useless College Prohibition The United States government decrees the unlawfulness of the consumption of alcohol for people under the age of 21. The University has the legal right to choose to enforce state and federal laws on its property. However, there is a difference between having the legal right to do something and choosing to enforce this right from an ethical standpoint. Legally, all American citizens have a first amendment right to speak out in support of the Ku Klux Klan, yet it is not only unnecessary, but also unethical to do so. Similarly, most Universities pointlessly enforce drinking laws on their campus although its not required of them. Many college presidents are realizing that it is not only not their job or place to enforce the mature drinking age on their campuses, but also that the beneficial results of not policing their students’ drinking outweigh the detrimental outcomes. Correspondingly, these administrators are trying to get the drinking age for college students reduced to 18 as a result. Justin Pope from the Associated Press wrote an article concluding that even though both sides of the mature legal drinking age argument agree that alcohol abuse by college students is a severe problem, simply lowering the drinking age could solve this dilemma. Many of the highest respected academic institutions in the country, such as Duke and Dartmouth, have joined the movement named the Amethyst Initiative, which aims at lowering the legal drinking age in the United States to 18 years of age. The students pay the University first and foremost for education. Therefore, the primary mission of the University is not to police its students,
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but rather to educate them. The University has limited resources, and therefore must choose to use its resources to best support its primary mission and not focus on secondary tasks such as prohibiting their students’ rights to party. Trying to prevent students from drinking is a waste of resources and effort because the vast majority of students do not drink irresponsibly. In an article entitled “Underage Drinking”, Dr. David Hanson cites a nationwide study conducted using 168 American colleges and universities that presented three important statistics about American students. First, 98 percent of students have never gotten in trouble with a college or university administrator because of alcohol or behavior due to intoxication.
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