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Enjoy prom sober

Prom season opens this weekend in Grant County at Mississinewa High School.

We wish all a great and memoriable time. Of course we urge no drinking, drugging or reckless activities that would ruin more than just one night.

It is a fun time for families and friends and we need to ensure it stays a happy memory for those involved. All too often, the time for proms and graduations becomes a time of underage drinking. And that is too often combined with driving, creating a fatal combination.

Parents should not rely on school officials alone to prevent such behavior from happening. Parents have the biggest influence in their children's behavior, and it is up to them to stress the importance of being safe.

Compounding the tragedies that sometimes occur with reckless behavior are situations in which underage drinking is sanctioned by adults, who host parties or provide access to alcohol.

Parents need to step up and talk with teens about the risking their future, their scholarships to college and their lives. Let them know you want them to have fun on prom night, but you also want them to avoid being foolish.

Enabling adults might offer all the rationalization in the world, but the bottom line is this: It is illegal, wrong for underage kids to drink alcohol. It's incredibly dangerous and criminal for teenagers to become intoxicated and get behind the wheel of a car.

(Actually, it's that way for people of any age.)

Parents are not doing their children favors by condoning underage drinking. Supplying alcohol to minors is not only irresponsible, it is also illegal – a Class A misdemeanor for contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

It's a parent's prerogative and responsibility to take steps to discourage teens from drinking alcohol. Adults must protect minors, not aid in illegal activity.

If a few party-hosting parents were arrested, more people would likely keep the night fun and sober. Arrests for adults involving illegal activity at parties has happened in our county in the past. The best way to avoid it this year is to keep your children sober.