Most people know a parent of a high schooler or a young college student. Such parents sit among our Century Council staff, may live next door, may attend our church or community organization, and so on. We’re sympathetic to the challenges of raising teens. And we’re particularly sympathetic to the sometimes confusing rhetoric of underage drinking juxtaposed against the reality.
The Century Council, alongside a myriad of partners who work to keep teens safe and alcohol-free, has repeated that parents are the leading influence on a teen’s decision to drink – or not to drink – alcohol. The unfortunate counterpoint to this is adults are the leading providers of alcohol.
We support the 21 year old legal drinking age. Underage drinking is illegal. Period. Teens who drink underage not only face possible legal charges, negative effects on their school or extracurricular involvement, but also potentially life-threatening consequences.
All parents want the best for their children. If we’re going to raise productive, well-adjusted young citizens, as parents, we cannot condone illegal behavior. We must guide our kids to make smart choices and that means, as role models, parents must themselves practice good judgment.
We realize this is not always easy to do.
Be strong, parents, your kids deserve it.