Wet campus arguments need more thought

Editoral Board

Issue: The Students’ Association passed a resolution supporting the allowance of alcohol in upperclassman housing for people at least 21 years old.

Just because USD is doing it doesn’t mean we should.

USD university officials approved a new alcohol policy for fall 2012 that will allow alcohol in the upperclassman housing of Coyote Village and MacFadden Hall. Of course, it initially seems like a great idea. Twenty-one is the legal age.

But let’s do it for the right reasons. Students who are 21 are legal adults and should be treated as such. We want to make it clear that we support a wet campus, and we are glad the Students’ Assocation agrees. But we do not support a poor defense for this resolution.

Here is the first whereas clause: “The freedom to consume alcohol is a major driver for students of legal drinking age to move off campus.”

It would be interesting to see some facts that back this up. But if it is just a matter of speculation, we will counter-speculate that the real driving force is price. It currently costs $2,100 per semester to live in the Meadows complex. That’s $525 per month, which only covers rent and utilities. We have to wonder how students who stay on campus could ever afford alcohol.

In the second whereas clause, it states living on campus is linked to successful graduation rates.

This may be true, but do we really want more students to stay on campus right now? For USD it makes sense because they are fighting to keep students on campus. SDSU is not in the same situation. We are squeezing students anywhere there is a space. There definitely doesn’t seem to be a need for recruitment to keep students on campus.

After discussing the matter for just 10 to 15 minutes, SA unanimously approved the resolution. We wish they would have discussed this longer and came up with some legitimate reasons for following in USD’s footsteps. And we wish they would have taken the time to consider potential consequences.

SA says they stand “ready to partner with the administration in working toward making this proposal a reality.” We don’t think they are ready for that quite yet — at least not without more thoughtful consideration.

Stance: The reasons why the Students’ Association unanimously supports alcohol on campus are not valid, and the issue deserves more thought.