Aug 292011
 
Authors: Jordan Lavelle

This past weekend’s pool party at Rams Pointe proved to be a great success. Sure, an estimated 15 people were injured and another four were arrested for fighting. But if we can simply observe the facts that lie beneath the chaotic, chlorinated surface, maybe we will be able to see the bright side of things for once.

According to Facebook, about 3,000 guests attended the back-to-school bash. I’ll be the first to admit this website lacks ethos (that means credibility for the non-communications majors) to say the least, however, bear with me for argument’s sake.

Now if we examine Saturday’s events by the numbers, only 0.5 percent of the attendees were injured and a mere 0.1 percent lost their composure and got into a fight. Another fun fact: police did not issue a single minor-in-possession citation.

There’s something to be said when you have a significant amount of college students gathered in one place fueled by alcohol, egos and hormones, and the majority of the consequences include the common hangover, patchy memory, and perhaps a temporary loss of dignity.

The truth is that while a statistically insignificant group of students attracted unnecessary attention to the things that can go wrong, most of the people who went to the party fulfilled their intent, which was to have a good time.

I wholeheartedly disagree with Fort Collins resident Chris Coats, when in yesterday’s Collegian article, he said, “…in terms of alcohol awareness, the university needs to take more steps to prevent things like this.”

Prevent things like what, individuals in a supposedly free country coming together on the weekend to socialize at an off-campus apartment complex that’s unaffiliated with the university? I’ll cite the Constitution of the United States when I say it is the right of the people, under the First Amendment, to assemble peaceably.

In the same article, Fort Collins Council member Gerry Horak brought up a couple interesting points. “Any time there’s a disturbance like this it’s not a good thing for the community,” Horak said.

The use of “disturbance” in this context conjures up images of Ebenezer Scrooge. Sorry, but Fort Collins isn’t Pleasantville; it’s a college town and probably will continue to be for some time. We can both recognize and accept this reality, or we can continue to live in our delusions and look on with scorn, and that benefits no one.

As college students, we will party on the weekends and be drunk, loud and obnoxious sometimes. But we’re not a bunch of hooligans seeking to disturb the peace, we just want to make the most of our time as “broke, college kids” because it’ll be over before we know it (the college part, at least).

Horak goes on, “What always happens is that a minority of people cause a stain on everyone’s reputation.” Well why does that happen in the first place? This is the real disturbance that is not good for the community (or civilization in general). Is it ever fair to form predetermined opinions about someone based solely on subjective comparisons and confirmation bias? There will be an eternal struggle for equal opportunity and treatment among people as long as we, as a society, continue to exhibit this judgmental narrow-mindedness.

I’m honestly disgusted by the media’s incessant focus on negativity. Where were the quotes, pictures and statistics illustrating the amount of students who had a good (dare I say, great) time?

Life is full of possibilities, both good and bad, so why do we tend to get tunnel vision when it comes to negative news? What useful purpose does it serve to talk about, dwell on and therefore spread negativity?

We always have the power of choice. May we choose to declare our independence from the monstrosity that is mainstream media, and instead celebrate our Rights to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

_Jordan Lavelle is a junior communications major and a Collegian copy editor. _

 Posted by at 4:03 pm

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