Editorial: Public drinking a distant memory

A few weeks ago, students were able to view the Campus Security and Fire Safety Report for 2008, a document that shows the statistics of certain violations by students throughout the years.

While Rider today is not what you would call a “party school,” it was not always this way. In years past, students were much more open about their partying. It was not uncommon to see students in their free time walking throughout residence halls carrying 30-packs of beer in the hallway. When the weather was nice, students sat around the lake and listened to music while enjoying an alcoholic beverage after a long, hard week of classes.

If you went into any fraternity house, you would find a hallway full of students. In several rooms, there might be a different drinking game being played and the doors would always be open. It seemed like an actual party, while now it’s more of a chill hangout.

Since those days, new alcohol policies have been put into effect. Punishments are much stiffer. Public Safety now needs to walk through the Greek houses, limiting the amount of drinking that is occurring. Rather than drinking in the hallways, people who drink do it in the privacy of their rooms. Even the volume of music has to be kept at a low level. If it is too loud, it raises suspicion of a party going on inside.

Students still have the desire to drink — they just don’t want to get caught. In this way, the new policies are working. Though it may seem like there is less drinking on campus, the number of alcohol violations has remained around the same level.

The reason for this is enforcement. More enforcement leads to less open drinking, which in turn results in less dangerous drinking. When students drink less dangerously and parties are also more strictly regulated, the campus becomes a safer place.

As the seniors of 2010 prepare to graduate, the memories of how Rider used to be will go with them, and no one will know how the rules on this campus were. As for the future, these new policies that have taken effect will now be the norm for how students have to behave.

This weekly editorial expresses the majority opinion of The Rider News editorial board and was written by the Opinion Editor, Angelique Lee, and the Executive Editor, Kristie Kahl.

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