Neville Chamberlain: Alive And Well At the Amethyst Initiative
We're reliably informed that something called the Amethyst Initiative has managed to sign up a number of college presidents eager to kowtow to an army of militant drunks.
"What?" you say, "college presidents doing something important besides migrating from job to job like a bunch of disloyal, money grubbing locusts? Thinking about the Big Issues? Brilliant!"
Hold your horses for a minute, Sparky.
The inartfully yclept initiative is an effort to get the national drinking age lowered from 21 to 18, on the somewhat dubious premise that this will serve to limit college binge drinking among the studenti and there will therefore be peace and justice.
Were truth in advertising enforced, this could be described as the Caving In To Campus Disorder/Drunken Bum Initiative. A more appropriate symbol would be a stinking drunk person vomiting in a wastebasket while hurling a brick at police.
Apparently this notion is the brainchild of John McCardell, former president of Middlebury College. He recites that the law is routinely evaded (true) and that the people that it is aimed at believe it is unfair, unjust, discriminatory and a downright shame-all of which is true, but beside the point. People in the habit or routinely disobeying the law always see consequences for their actions as a gross imposition. Also, if you believe that drunken affrays should be the norm in every college town across the nation then you're on board with the Amethyst Initiative. And it's also germane if you figure that college presidents need more time to sit on their asses instead of getting out in front and enforcing reasonable rules of conduct on campus and in campustown.
John, here's what you're going to get if you succeed. These are the people you want to turn loose on the rest of us.
Joanne Glasser, prez of Bradley University in the great state of Illinois is not joining forces with the amethystas. She disagrees with the muddleheaded notion that lowering the drinking age will make anyone safer.
Here's what she said, and it's worth reiterating:
"Based on the tragic and untimely alcohol-related deaths of two Bradley students last year, I recognize more than others the very serious consequences of this proposal. Rather than spending our time trying to lower the drinking age, universities should be focusing our attention on programs and activities that address both the responsible use of alcohol and a reduction in the misuse and abuse of alcohol on our respective campuses."
You know, I have an idea. How about the Obey the Rules or Get Your Ass Gone Initiative?
The premise is simple. There are rules, you're expected to behave like an adult on campus and follow them, and if you don't, out you go. Make your own way in the world.
I'd be glad to host it if somebody like A-B or Jack Daniels funds the project.
I mean, who could be against expecting people to obey the rules that were in place when they applied to Booshwah State University, for heaven's sake.
All of which raises an interesting and important question.
Who's paying for the Amethyst Initiative?