Commentary by Benjamin Turcea
University police canceled the community advisory concerning an alleged stabbing early Sunday morning, but feelings of danger and unease have yet to dissipate. I walked home with my friend that morning, something I have felt obligated to do more and more in a school year glutted with advisories and notifications.
As I trekked back to Montrone Hall, I caught a slight breeze coming down off the Hill in the alley between Montrone and Pilarz. I could not place the scent at first — and was somewhat distracted by the police cars and flashes of Americana over on Vine — but recognized it after an instant as cheap beer.
Our streets and the north end of our campus now quite literally reek of alcohol.
Our elders often warn us that the drinking culture (should we deign to call it such) eats acidically away at our community; I’ve paid little attention to these claims until recently. I hesitate to even call it a “drinking culture.” I am part of a drinking culture: I imbibe with friends, and enjoy it. But this other phenomenon, where alcohol and vomit flow through our streets, is neither “drinking” nor “culture.” It is, charitably, subhuman.
So as I returned to Montrone with my shirt over my nose and eyes cast back, nervous for my own safety, I recognized sensibly our student body’s chief problem. Engaging in and tacitly promoting an environment in which our peers regularly struggle to maintain normal bodily function over the weekends must stop. We have far more to live for than busted basement parties and the next blackout.