Why doesn't the cruise lines get tough on underage drinking? I have seen this on several cruises and wonder why these little darling are allowed to run like drunken fools all over the ship. I would love to see the cruise lines throw the parents and their underage teens off the ship that can't follow the rules.
I just got back and personally saw a lady I was talking to give Coronas to her 15 yr old daughter. I also was talking to another lady who told me she bought her teenage daughter a bottle of Malibu rum. If someone buys a bucket of beers, there is not much control over who drinks them. There servers don't care. It is only the person buying the drinks that needs to be of age. Besides on RCI you can drink beer and wine at 18.
Our drinking age is 19 , so I can see some parents buying their 19 and 20 yr olds booze, it does seem silly that a ship that is NOT american has an "american drinking age" . In fact in some of our provinces the drinking age is 18, as it is in many european countries( where it is in fact even younger) . It's not the age of the drinker but the attitude, ( although 15 is insane) in many countries teenagers are allowed a drink a dinner, and consequently having a "drink" is not such " forbidden fruit" .
The states does NOT have a better record for alcohol related incidents even with their higher than many other countries drinking age.
P.S. Why do you send your 18, 19, and 20 yrs olds to war when you don't think they can handle a drink( but they can handle a gun?)
Ultimately it's the parents again, supervise your kids, and yes they are " kids" if mommy and daddy still take them on vacation and pay for everything.
Why would you send them to war and not allow them a stiff drink before giving the orders? Good points, PG. I blame it on a culture that treats teens as adults when they want to drink, make babies, act out, and rebel, then treats them like innocent children who just didn't know better when they get in trouble. When you have rights without responsibilities, you end up with a bunch of stupid laws that no one can explain. Fortunately, most still turn out okay.
Could the problem be that in the US we never really teach people to drink responsibly? In Europe children are served wine as a part of their meal. Few adults there become staggering drunk on the weekend as it it highly frowned upon by society. Here in the US staggering drunk gets you laughs. I would rather my child have a glass of wine with dinner at 15 and continue this moderation for life than never touch alcohol until 21 and drink excesively when out for the night or on vacation.
The real issue is not drinking, but manners, personal responsibility, and discipline as it is with so many of the issues discussed on these boards. Any age person who brings bad attention on himself/herself is the problem.
I personally don't understand the US's drinking age. We should instead teach our children how to be responsible. The only thing the current drinking age has accomplished is to make it commonplace to break the law. Our youth learn that the idea is to not get caught. I personally believe it was better to teach them not to break the law. The "don't get caught" attitude will utlimately carry over into such things as speeding, filling out their income tax forms, lying to customers in business, etc.
I was an exchange student in Europe when I was 15. The attitude I experienced there was that at 15 you could drink, but if you acted like an idiot, you were shunned. I did not see near as many drunks at any age as I do here in the US.
No, I will not give my teenagers alcohol because it is illegal. I want to teach them to be law abiding citizens. However, if I could change the law, I would. Teenagers need to learn to grow up. Part of that is learning the limits. We are just delaying the grow up part in this country with the excuse that it saves lives. How about teaching your children responsibility. Yes, that is tougher, but it also saves lives and I believe makes them personally responsible for their actions - a lesson for the future.
When my oldest child started driving we sat him down and explained to him the dangers of drinking (along with dinking and driving). So many kids in the US think that it is cool to drink, that they can handle it. I on the other hand just want my children to be safe. So, my husband and I came up with the "no questions" policy. If our children go out and for some reason drink or if there ride drinks; they can call us with no questions asked to come and pick them up.
The other thing we do is if our kids want to drink then we encourage them to drink in front of us. This has taken the "sneaking" around drinking away. So far none of the kids have taken a drink (to our knowledge) and the oldest is 17. I think being open minded about things and remembering how it was when you were their age helps.
Actually it is not illegal to give your own children beer. Hard liquor is a differant story. However it is not illegal for a parent to give their child 3.2 beer. This is from a 12 year law officer. You might check your state that is the way it is in Kansas. I would imagine the age off the 12 mile line is less than the U.S. also.
The cruiseline has the option of choosing of following the stricter laws of the homeport which in many cases is Florida and you cannot drink under the age of 21 years, even 3.2 beer and if anyone, minor, adult, parent supplies alcoholic beverages to a minor they can be charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor although it is doubtful. They can also turn them in to the Department of Children and Families and that is a much bigger headache than being arrested. Bottom line, follow the rules and do not provide kids with alcohol. This from a veteran of law enforcement since 1971 and a father of 7! <G>
"Congratulations-- you're 18! Your parents can no longer tell you what to do, or exercise any control over you. You are no longer a minor. You can move out on your own. You can get married and have children-- lifetime commitments, at least in theory. You can start up a business, and sign legally binding contracts. No more juvenile justice system if you do wrong-- you must accept the full consequences of any serious criminal act. You can vote for any public office, from dogcatcher to the congress and the president, and run for most public offices yourself. You can join the military, or be drafted in time of national emergency, and fight, kill, and die for your country. But order a bottle of beer to go with those nachos and salsa? Ooh, sorry, pal-- that's just too much responsibility for you to handle!"
As you can probably tell, I find this "logic" most unconvincing. I think we ought to go back to a single consistent definition of adulthood-- then hold those adults fully responsible for their actions.
So far as I can see, upbringing, and even more importantly, genes, are the key; people need to be judged as individuals. There are 15-year-olds who have no problem at all with "a glass of wine with dinner", and people far older for whom, as the saying goes, "one is too many and a hundred isn't enough". I consider myself lucky to be in the former category. I think there's definitely such a thing as "an addictive personality"-- although it's more accurately described as an addictive brain chemistry, and that it runs in families. My family has its own kinds of craziness, but on my mother's side, among seventy or eighty relatives, there was exactly ONE who had a substance abuse problem, which he put behind him in a few months. Contrast this with the many unfortunate families in which alchoholism and other drug addictions sow misery and death through a third or more of their members, a devastation that goes on for generation after generation...well, that's what I meant about genetics and brain chemistry.
Sometimes I think that the state needs to issue drinking licences as it does for driving, to keep those who can't handle the sauce, whatever their age, from buying it so easily.
The port from which the cruise originates is not relevant. Local law must be adhered to while the ship is at port in any jurisdiction. But while on the high seas the cruise line can set any rules regarding drinking alcohol it wishes, enforce them as it wishes, or rescind them as it wishes. There no legal issue while at sea because you aren't in any country.
I would guess the cruise lines often don't enforce their rules about alcohol consumption (by letting teens drink alcohol) or choose to rescind their published rules (by serving teens alcohol) for the same reason they often don't enforce or rescind other rules: they don't want to offend paying guests.
Tim, sorry but I cannot tell you how wrong you are in just about everything you said. Agreeing or not agreeing has nothing to do with what is. DAR, as for the forged ID's, doesn;t happen while on a ship as you purchase your drinks with your S&S card and not cash and the card is imbedded with your personal information including your age and the computer with spit the card back out and refuse charges for alcohol.
Actually giving alcohol of ANY sort (even 3.2) to underage drinkers *is* illegal.
My son takes a drink of wine every Friday night during our shabbat dinner as part of our religious observance, so drinking has become a little de-mystified for him.
That being said, my sister always allowed her daughters and their friends to drink at her house underage. I understood her reasoning - at least they were not drinking and driving - but disagreed with offering teens alcohol.
Thomas is right - the discussion has veered away from cruiselines not being tough enough on underage drinkers. I've always been curious how underage drinkers *get* drinks on board. Are they paying some way other than their sail and sign cards?
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Jim, in what way is Tim wrong? I'm still wondering about the "American"drinking age on on a non American ship, with a non American crew, registered under non American flag, travelling in mostly non American waters!
As I've pointed out before I do not even know of any other country with a drinking age as high as the States. In Canada it ranges from 18 to19 depending on the province.In European countries it can even be lower than that. But , that is not the point.I guess I just confused about what "law " is being broken if a 19 yr old drinks on the ship while it is at sea, or while it is in a port with a lower drinking age.?
I don't know anything about maritime law but may be someone here does?
It's sounds to me like the US just needs to raise the age for everything. I guess it would fix everything if you had to wait to vote, wait to join the armed forces, wait to drink, wait to drive, and wait for a whole lot of other stuff until you are 21. People just need to quit griping about legal drinking ages and just follow the rules!!! I mean it is LAW!!! And you can get thrown in jail if you break the law. So just follow the rules and quit complaining!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm tired of these message boards always turning into "b!**h" sessions.
I can't speak for Jim but I can speculate he is thinking of Florida's "special maritime criminal jurisdiction". This is a state law that lets Florida prosecute certain criminal offenses on ships up to 100 miles from the coast of Florida under certain conditions.
It is Section 910.006, Florida Statutes if you want to google it.
Unfortunately, providing alcohol to a minor would not be prosecutable under this statute. It says explicitly an act can be prosecuted only if "the criminal laws of the United States prohibit substantially the same act . . . on board ships of the United States registry outside of the territory of the United States." U.S. Maritime law doesn't address underage drinking.
Furthermore, the statute also says, "...it shall be an affirmative defense that the act ... was authorized by the master of the ship or an officer of the flag state in accordance with the laws of the flag state ..." IOW, if the cruise line says it's OK, then it's OK.
and lets not forget the lawyers....if an "underage" ( I realize the definition is different depending on the context) person is injured, the cruiseline could be held liable in some way.
I realize that many of these ships are registered outside of the country, but many of the companies are incorporated right here in the good 'ole US of A. Carnivale and RCCL trade on the NYSE.
So, while we all my banty about the altruistic, moralistic, legalistic and realistic points of to "serve or not to serve", corporate lawyers, all over the land are getting rich on issues such as these. This in not an editorial about lawyers....just a slightly different point of view concerning drinking age.
And it is true, drinking and being over 21 does not , necessarily, a responsible drinker make. Let face it, we do drink too much in this country. I am including myself here. When I was 18, it was legal to drink in Fla, and by god, we did....and we drove. I think I would so paranoid now if I were a parent. My kids would hate me because I would not let them out of the house!!! I guess if I ever get the chance and the honor to be a parent, I hope that I set a better example for my children than was set for me.
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