Special Reports

Change culture

Excessive drinking in my generation is a culture. When you are appreciated for taking care of your friend, it's not for your chicken noodle soup: It's because you held her hair back while she vomited in a grimy apartment bathroom.

It's normal for friends to not remember chunks of time. Work hard, play harder is the motto to abide by. In short, it is a way of college life.

We communicate the unwritten rules of this culture from person to person. What would happen, then, if we stopped underestimating the power we have as peers? What if upperclassmen began raising an eyebrow, shaking our heads to the younger student bragging about hugging the toilet bowl? If parents begin to realistically speak about the difference between the correct amount and too much?

Can we rewrite the conventions of our drinking culture? We are capable of instilling change in those who most look up to us. If it succeeds, this positive peer pressure will transcend any written law we attempt to enforce.

Perhaps this is a problem we must tackle from within each one of us, and only then will the solution pour into our streets.

Shoba Belegundu Ferguson Township