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Do beer sales at North Carolina colleges spur underage drinking?

The new college semester is in full swing at many institutions across the country. Fall semester also means the start of football season, and fans of college football may have waited through a long summer to once again enjoy their favorite sport. Now, many university campuses, included several in North Carolina, are allowing the sale of beer at football games, taking advantage of the nation's penchant for combining alcohol and sports to raise a little extra money. However, some argue that beer sales at college stadiums encourage underage drinking.

Opponents of the decision to offer alcohol sales at college sporting events point to the recent increase of alcohol-related deaths on the nation's campuses. Some data shows that almost 2,000 students die each year from incidents related to alcohol use or abuse. Since most students on the average college campus are under the legal drinking age, those caught with alcohol risk legal ramifications as well.

According to those who oppose the decision, offering alcohol at sporting events on campus may exacerbate the already growing problem of underage drinking by reinforcing the erroneous belief many students have that alcohol must be present to enjoy themselves. Alcohol use is a factor in many incidents of campus assaults, date rape and other crimes that alter the lives of the accused as well as the victims. Despite the objections, more colleges are opening taps and profiting from beer sales.

While precautions may be taken to prevent beer sales in student areas of most stadiums, North Carolina students have ways of procuring alcohol at such events, even if they are underage. The legal and personal consequences of underage drinking may follow someone well past his or her college years. If an underage student faces legal issues related to alcohol, the assistance of an experienced attorney can mean the difference between an uncertain future and a bright outlook.

Source:, "Beer sales at college games a risky revenue stream", Chris Woodward, Aug. 28, 2017

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Do beer sales at North Carolina colleges spur underage drinking? | Messer Law Firm