I have noticed that the issue of “personal responsibility” comes up when people start talking about the underage alcohol problems here at [Anytown/U of Anywhere]. We are responsible for our own actions, the argument goes, so those under age 21 who are buying or drinking alcohol should be the ones penalized. If we all are responsible for our actions, then shouldn’t retailers and those who buy for underage drinkers be held responsible too? They are, after all, the ones who enable the underage individuals to obtain booze in the first place. And in the case of the retailers, they are the ones who profit from the sales.
Our [city/state] is currently looking at instituting a keg registration program similar to that already in place in thirteen other states. Keg regulation is needed, because it distributes responsibility to all those involved in the sale. The store is responsible for making sure those who buy kegs are 21, and they are held accountable if they sell to those without identification or who are under legal drinking age. The person who buys the keg is responsible, because they know that they will be held accountable for allowing underage or intoxicated individuals to drink from the keg. This does not diminish the responsibility of the drinker himself/herself. It just creates incentives for responsible behavior by others involved in the process.
If we are to succeed in reducing high-risk alcohol use here in [Anytown/U of Anywhere], we need to all bear our share of the responsibility. Keg regulations are one way to insure that this happens.