Officer Myer, the police officer I interviewed, stated the main reasons why there is substance abuse amongst adolescents is because of peer pressure and family history. He agreed that the drinking age is exactly where it should be due to maturity and other factors. Officer Myer stated that substance abuse amongst teens is something that they deal with on sometimes a daily, but mostly a weekly basis. He stated that most of the substance abuse problems during the week come from the colleges and universities around here and from the high schools on the weekends. His advice to teens is to not drink at all and stand up to peer pressure. The advice he gives to his children is to stay clear of alcohol and if you are brought into a situation involving alcohol excuse yourself from the party or wherever that may be. He explained that even if you aren't drinking and are in an environment with alcohol that new laws in Pennsylvania claim you are still in the possession of alcohol and you can get charged for that. He touched on the fact that it’s becoming socially acceptable by some parents to allow their kids to drink in a controlled environment. He is completely against this because you run the risk of them getting behind the wheel and putting their lives at risk.
I think many people need to be aware of Officer Myers view on substance abuse amongst teens. Especially the fact that you can still get charged with underage drinking, if you are in the presence of alcohol at a party, even if you aren't the one drinking it. I'm against this law because I think it discourages the idea of designated drivers but I do believe people need to be aware of it.
The first adult I interviewed had a very strong opinion on substance abuse among adolescents. She stated that people have a genetic predetermined gene that makes them have an addictive personality. If kids start experimenting with alcohol and drugs too early she believes that they will most likely become abusers by adulthood. She stated, “It runs in families, for example, several men in my family are alcoholics who personally turned me off from drinking. Also, my older brother was a heavy drinker and my niece has had years of alcohol and drug abuse. It eventually got to the point that she lost custody of her 5 children and was put in jail for stealing money to support her habit.” Having grown up with an alcoholic grandfather, she explained that watching the negative effects that alcohol had on her family made her feel in a way that she didn't think alcohol was something she needed. She was extremely curious as to how kids today even obtain alcohol, who gives them the money, and so on. She also thinks it’s outrageous that some parents accept drinking among their teens or even allow them to do it at home. She added, “I have friends that who let their underage kids drink at home and they said it was to teach them to learn to drink responsibly. However, I think that could increase their chances of addiction and should not be tolerated.”
I definitely can relate to this persons perspective on alcohol abuse among adolescents. Coming from a family that has had alcohol and drug problems, I completely understand her viewpoint and why she feels that it’s not only is it unnecessary for her to drink, but that underage drinking should not be tolerated. However, as I do believe that some people may be more prone to becoming an addict I do disagree with her statement about people being born addicts.
The second adult I interviewed absolutely had a different view on drinking and alcohol abuse among adolescents. She started off by saying, “The way the laws are today, teens cannot drink beer like I did when I was a teen. Now they drink hard liquor and they can't handle it. It's also so forbidden that it almost makes it attractive.” She continued by saying that drinking vodka as your first experience is a gateway into trying the next bigger thing which could be...
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