WE'VE had our own Missing Blonde story here the past month, an IU student who disappeared of a 4 AM about a month ago. One of the last places Lauren Spierer was seen in public was a Bloomington bar. Lauren Spierer was a year short of being there legally.
This didn't rate much more than a mention on the timeline with the locals--cynics of my height and shoe size occasionally note that commercial enterprises that cater to middle-class pursuits rarely do--until the official search was more-or-less called off, when the Indianapolis Star noted the bar in question was the source of a notable percentage of the underage drinking citations issued by State Excise.
And here's the thing, Murica: that story brought a predictable number of the Star's commenters (caution: don't go there) to insist this amounted to some sort of war on Freedom. Freedom! The freedom to drink if you please, the freedom to sell liquor to people the law says are minors. This is a change, Murica, and not for the better. Listen, you and I know that on occasion my willfulness trumps your ordinances, and did so to a greater extent when I was that age. But I always knew where the line was before I crossed it, and I didn't use any Randbabble to excuse myself. (For that matter, th' fuck did I want to pay to drink in bars? When did being impoverished stop being part of the college experience?) This sort of crap is recent, it's the direct result of facile libertarianism (pardon my redundancy) being manipulated by the Republican party. You may recall, Murica, that we had this conversation a few years back, when every pundit who pockets teevee money fell all over himself excusing the Bush Twins for being nabbed with fake IDs, on the scientific grounds that Everybody Does It, a standard previously applied only to scrupulousness of tax preparation on the part of corporations and persons in the punditological tax bracket. It sure didn't catch on as a general maxim after that. No "Everybody Says Racist Things" or "We've All Texted Photos of our Junk, Haven't We?"
Where did the distinction between Freedom and License go, Murica? The same place honesty and fairness went? Y'know, if you manage to blow out all 235 candles today…