The Setonian believes the University should be realistic in any policies it sets regarding the consumption or possession of Four Loko on campus. Seton Hall must realize that any ban or restrictions regarding the drink will, in effect, be superficial as students will find ways to circumvent the policies.
We are not endorsing the beverage, nor are we opposing any restrictions; however, we must ask how effective a ban would be.
As is, Seton Hall prohibits the possession or consumption of alcohol for all underage persons on campus, particularly in the dorms. This does not, however, deter underage students from consuming alcohol.
Any University ban focusing on Four Loko specifically, or caffeinated malt beverages in general, can only hope to curb the consumption of the drink. For many students, underage or otherwise, the consumption of alcohol occurs primarily at parties, whether they are on or off-campus. Even if Seton Hall were to ban Four Loko on-campus, there is nothing to deter students from drinking it at parties off campus.
As our front page story details, college students across the country have become ill after drinking Four Loko in excess. An outright ban on the beverage would merely increase the consumption of the drink off-campus or underground. Instead, Seton Hall must be smart about whatever action it ultimately takes.
If Seton Hall is serious about curbing the consumption of Four Loko, it needs to promote responsible drinking habits and educate students on the dangers of drinking the combination of alcohol and energy drinks.