Opinion » Letters

Parents should teach children how to drink




If someone has never had a drink, how would they know what is too much? It would be no surprise for them to chug vodka just like beer if they didn’t know the difference.   It’s no wonder that every year college freshmen turn up dead from alcohol poisoning. The causes are ignorance and trying to perpetuate childhood. Before exposure to the whole bar, shouldn’t our kids first have some knowledge, respect, controlled experience, and responsibility with it? Laws, threats, punishments, and prohibition are no substitute for teaching and experience.   Serving a small glass of wine to a 16-year-old at a family dinner teaches respect and manners regarding alcohol in an appropriate setting. Learning healthy boundaries at home would get drinking out into the open where good habits can be established before peer pressure and bad advice. Driving it into hiding such as the frat house spells disaster.   Unfortunately, this vital education is illegal for parents to provide. The choice is possible jail time for supplying alcohol to minors (who are adults by any other measure) or sending out our college freshmen totally ill equipped to deal with temptation of forbidden fruit and stupidity. The shocking part is not how many, but how few die these tragic deaths.   How can our most highly educated young adults have so little understanding of such a huge part of our culture? The same law that fails to protect these kids protects this ignorance. Puritanical head burying and current drinking laws both contribute to sending these lambs to the slaughter.



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