There exists a tragedy in modern society today that is in the mainstream throughout the world. It runs rampant from city to city, state to state, nation to nation. The cause of that tragedy is Alcohol. What is conventionally an occasional pastime is instead turned into a dangerous misuse of a poisonous substance. However, what is worse is the fact that more and more young adults are the cause of this misuse. Although adults are also partaking in this rather foolish act, the real danger comes from the extensive participation in teenagers and young adults, both legal and under aged. As this tragedy continues to occur without any sign of a halt, we can do little but wonder why this dangerous trend is increasing in our society.
Much of the focus on alcohol abuse is geared towards students in college. Due to frequent social activity, more situations exist where alcohol is offered to a regular college student. Furthermore, students derive their expectations of alcohol from their environment and from each other, as they face the insecurity of establishing themselves in a new setting. Customs that promote college drinking are embedded in numerous levels of students’ environment. The walls of college sports arenas carry advertisements from alcohol industry sponsors. Communities permit establishments near campus to serve or sell alcohol, and these establishments depend on the college clientele for their financial success. However, it seems that the college culture actively promotes drinking, or passively promotes it, through tolerance, or even tacit approval, of college drinking as a rite of passage. The consequences of underage and high-risk drinking leave no room for doubt. Excessive alcohol use is harmful, affecting both students and the institution as a whole. Not only do heavy drinkers negatively affect their own health and academic potential but also the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of their peers who abstain or drink moderately.
Due to the likelihood of peer pressure and one’s own thought of fitting in, an average student will drink when presented with alcohol. And so the question that is asked is “Why should one choose to/not to drink?” Every student seems to have a reason why they do or don’t; whether those reasons are good or not is purely based on the different perspectives that each subject holds. However, in the end, everyone agrees that alcohol abuse can lead to some devastating consequences. In order to better understand different perspectives towards drinking I interviewed a few of my friends. “Drinking doesn’t do anything for me. It wastes my time, and I could be doing better things with that time, even if it is just playing video games,” was one of my friends remarks when I asked him if he drinks or not. Obviously that is but one opinion. Another friend of mine who considers himself an average drinker views it differently. His response was – “To me, drinking is a form of relaxation. I get to ease my mind and take a break from the things in my life that might be causing me stress.” The more people I interviewed, I realized several students that drink share a common point of view. They believe that as long as they drink in moderation, they will have control of their actions. Neglecting the fact that very little or moderation exists at college social events.
Another cause of excessive drinking is its availability. Despite the national 21-year minimum drinking age law, under aged drinking is pervasive on college campuses, according to a new study released by the HYPERLINK "http://alcoholism.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?site=http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/press/releases/press06192000.html" Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study. Two in three (63 percent) underage students reported drinking in the past 30 days. These students pay less per drink than of-age students and, though they drink less frequently, drink more per occasion than older