by: Timothy Owen (Penn State University)
The streets of State College were infested with a sea of drunken green this past Saturday for the fourth annual State Patty’s Day. Students and visitors relentlessly partied the day away despite the backlash from Penn State faculty, residents, and the town.
Four years ago spring break fell during the actual St. Patrick’s Day—a day when students would play hooky and start sucking down green beer at 6 a.m. In response the students created the famous (or infamous) State Patty’s Day, and celebrated the “holiday” before everyone went south for vacation. And celebrated is what they did. 2009’s festivities saw an increase of arrests—under-ages, DUI’s, disorderly conducts, etc. In response, members of the Penn State community looked to halt the endless partying for 2010 and quench the thirst of the party-goers. Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board even stepped in. None of the bars in town honored “happy-hours,” and were not allowed to promote the holiday in any way.
But as expected, the tradition prospered unlike any year before. The streets appeared to be home to more partiers this year than any of the previous. Police reports agree. According to the campus newspaper, The Daily Collegian, there were 365 calls for police service that lead to 160 criminal arrests. But these numbers may be skewed due to the obvious increase of enforcement. I witnessed a student receive a $400 fine for littering a cigarette butt! When the guys in blue are stooping this low, the overall numbers have no choice but to skyrocket!
The party-poopers should have taken a page the history books. Prohibition does not work. It didn’t with alcohol, it isn’t with drugs, and it didn’t even work in the bible (Adam and Eve’s forbidden fruit.) Any time authority attempts to ban something they love, the citizens outcry! Al Capone kept the liquor trade around and Cheech and Chong kept toking the green-bud! And in the case of Penn Staters, they kept partying!
In reality, the choice to keep this holiday afloat is up to the students. It shows the true power of the people! If Penn Staters want these demoralizing numbers to disappear then get after the idiots! People who rip sinks off in Chipotle or puke all over Panera’s bathroom ruin it for all!
Obviously this “holiday” will continue, but in order to continue with out the hassle from the community we have to look after each other! It’s okay to fill the streets and party all day, but that also can be done free of destruction and violence! As long as we stop costing the town money, then they don’t have any complaints because the same thing happens every football weekend in the fall. The only difference: The town makes millions of dollars.