Under Age Drinking

It's a Saturday night, and the bars are packed. People are inside having a few, or more than a few, drinks. A select few are really drunk or passed out. Now lets step outside and take a look at a different type of drinking, drinking at an early age. High school and junior high kids are at a party drinking. Like the adults, some are just having a few, but quite a few are having more than that and are stumbling around.

These kids have been given the idea that drinking is something that adults do, and we all know that kids can't wait to be grown up. Thus, they drink, figuring that if they can at least do what adults do then they will be grown up, in a way. This is how our society works.

Enough with the philosophy of it. Now I would like to talk about the effects that early age drinking can have on a person. I grew up in a town that has the most bars per capata in the state of Montana and is in the top ten in the United States. This has a huge effect on under age drinkers. The bars card at the door and as long as your 18 your in. And since the bouncers will stamp nearly anyone they know or like the number of kids is always high. It dosn't help that Dillon is a college town and ther are many under age college kids there. Now lets imagine another party where kids are drinking.

The bonfire is roaring, Bubba just decided that singeing everyone's eyebrows off by throwing some gasoline on the fire would be fun. Of course nobody thought that this was very funny except for Bubba. Bubba is not the only teenage person at this party who has had a few to many. There are a lot of under age kids who are just plain drunk. This is a regular kind of party in my hometown, everyone goes out and drinks to get drunk. The sad thing is, that these kind of parties happen a lot of time twice a week expecially during the spring. All this partying catches up with these young peolpe. They don't get jobs because they are too tired from partying all night or all weekend long. Thier grades start slipping. The worst effect, however has to be the addiction to alcohol. I've seen freshman who drink all the time because they feel they can't live without their alcohol. Of course you have to realize that this is a worst case scenario. I also know kids who drink just a little, they know their limits, and don't try to break them.

Now here's another worst case scenario. A college kid has been studying for a few hours, you can feel the boredom in the room. He decides to take a few minutes off and cracks open a beer to relieve the tension. The only problem is that he doesn't stop there. He decides to have a few more, then after finishing a couple more he calls up his buddies and the go out and drink some more. He wakes up in his room on his floor or in someone else's room, thinking he must have passed out. He has a really bad hangover and decides to sleep it off. He wakes up quite a bit later, and in the room next to him you can here his long string of profanities. I guess he remembered the big test he is suppose to take. He crams in what material he can in what little time he has, knowing he won't be able to learn it all. He takes the test and knows he failed, this the fifth test he has failed so far and his GPA is way below par. Two days later he gets a letter saying that he is out of school for breaking academic probation, again this is a worst case scenario.

My last scenario is a person at around thirty or forty. You can see an old beat-up pickup drive in and park in front of one of the bars. He walks into the bar, a half-an-hour later he stumbles out and heads to another bar. Two hours later, and a twelve pack more, he stumbles his way out of the second bar. He walks to his pickup opens the door and tries to climb in but is to drunk. He finally gets in and passes out in his pickup. He wakes up the next morning hung over, just like the last three mornings. Except today is different, today he feels a pain in his stomach, not to harsh but it can be felt. He continues to drink and the pain just seems to get worse. After a while the pain has become so intense he has to go see a doctor. He comes out with some bad news finding out that he has Pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is a type of alcoholic poisoning, and as he has found out one cannot drink any more alcohol with this disease. This is one of the harshest diseases that goes along with the consumption of alcohol. In my hometown there are at least five or six examples of this, one the English teacher I had just last year. He was forced to retire before this year. Another man who has recently acquired it didn't amount to anything before he got it. He couldn't keep a job for more than a couple of weeks and the money he did earn didn't go to anything besides more alcohol, spending nearly every night at the bars.

No one means to end up being addicted to alcohol but for many different reasons people find more and more excuses to drink and finally become addicted. Alcohol has become a major problem in our society whether it be teenagers or even adults. Alcohol laws and alcohol awareness programs can only go so far I feel it is the responsibility of each and every one of us to take the matter into our own hands and make the right choices.




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