Archive for Thursday, March 19, 2009

After-prom example of alcohol-free fun

March 19, 2009

The recent death of a 19-year-old Kansas University student illustrates again the potential dangers of binge drinking and teenage alcohol consumption, and also reveals those concerns aren’t confined to impaired youngsters getting behind the steering wheel of a vehicle.

That latter concern was the stimulus for after-prom parties, such as the one Eudora parents have offered local teens for a generation.

But we have always felt after-prom parties performed an equally important function when the provided evidence to teenagers that the use of alcohol, or other recreational drugs for that matter, were not needed to have fun. The occasions were examples of large gatherings were alcohol didn’t provide the lubrication for social ease and if students learned to overcome their own social discomfort at the after-proms they would be much less inclined to rely on the use of alcohol, too.

Obviously much needs to be done to address the problem of teen and young adult binge drinking, especially in the context of social groups. But we do think after-proms do provide at least one positive counter example.

Aside from the real chance the local after-prom could save the life of a young student or someone unfortunate to meet an impaired teen on the street, the proof the night offers that alcohol isn’t a prerequisite for enjoyment is reason an enough for continued community support of the event.

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