January 1985

Students surveyed about alcohol intake
by Kim and Karla

   A recent poll was taken to determine the alcohol intake among 100 students at Maine South. The findings are worth sharing; they are both beneficial and educational.
   The results have proven that the assumption "everybody drinks" is not always true; moreover , it is often false. Although 95 percent of ht polled students tried alcohol, only 49 percent drink regularly and of those 75 percent drink bimonthly or even less than that.
   The incredible difference between the freshman and sophomore is definitely noteworthy. One-fifth of the freshmen polled have never tried alcohol, whereas 99 percent of the sophomores polled have tried liquor and 75 percent use it on a regular basis.
   These students are more than just statistics; they are real people with their own ideas and viewpoints. When asked if they prefer social events with alcohol, one student replied, "Yes, it's fun to watch all of the drunk people; they can be very entertaining."
    Another answer was, "No, if people aren't under peer pressure to drink, they'll have a better time. And no one has to worry about someone driving home drunk."
   This brings up another most important issue--drunk driving. The survey shows that 91 percent of those polled have never driven under the influence of alcohol. However, eight percent or 2 out of every 25 students have driven drunk at one time or another. Although this number may not strike you as alarming, the reality of this risk is. This concerns many of the students as well as their parents.
   One consistent fact was that parents do not condone drinking, especially when given the chance to express their views on the topic, as 37 percent of those polled had parents that were unaware their kids drank.
   A senior guy who previously stated that he didn't drink was proud of the fact that his parents felt that he was "the coolest."
   Another parent's reaction was most unusual: "A picture of me throwing up was found by my parents who blew it up and laughed at it."
   Often forgotten by many students, though not shown in our drinking habits, is the fact that the legal drinking age is 21. In future years, 72 percent of students believe their consumption of alcohol will increase, whereas 12 percent will decrease and 19 percent stay the same.
   One student voiced a hopeful opinion: "My alcohol intake will decrease due to the lack of interest, also the way I want my life to go. Alcohol doesn't fit, you know?"