Sun God Alcohol Regulation Enforcement and Student Health
By Taylor Marvin
Yesterday was the UCSD Sun God Festival, a day-long music festival notorious for being the one day of the year UCSD students cut loose and party. The festival’s also known for drinking — yesterday I personally witnessed at least 3 semi-conscious students being taken to the hospital by ambulance crews. The UCSD administration aggressively tries to prevent underage drinking and public drunkenness at Sun God, forbidding students from bringing bags or full water bottles in to the festival, and arrests are common. What’s ironic is that if administrators value student health this is exactly the wrong policy. Students are going to drink at Sun God, and no amount of aggressive policing is going to change this. However, by effectively preventing students from drinking within the controlled area of the festival UCSD administrators are ensuring that students will drink past their limits outside it. To make sure that they’re still buzzed hours into the festival, students preparing to leave for Sun God will deliberately drink beyond their limits, doing more shots than they are accustomed to because they know that it is their last opportunity to drink. This gives students an incentive to drink quickly and excessively, and guarantees that some students will get dangerously sick. To maximize student safety UCSD administrators should not aggressively enforce drinking laws at Sun God.