By Mariam Durrani
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Friday September 27, 2002
Murder, mayhem, fighting and drama. No, I am not talking about an episode of "The Sopranos." Actually, I am referring to many frequent scenes outside of local 21-and-under clubs that have opened in and around the Tucson area during my last four years.
In '99, we used to party-hardy at Gotham, but due to a murder and frequent brawls, the club had to be shut down. Then there was club Metro (aka the former Tiki Bob's), but that also disappeared.
Bliss opened up on East University Boulevard, and on March 20, 2000, was described as offering "the stylish class that Tucson desperately needs." Shockingly, style just wasn't accepted by party-goers here in Tucson (gasp).
There have been other clubs that have come and gone over the years and in Wednesday's Wildcat article "No more boogieing at Tiki Bob's Cantina," we bid farewell to yet another local club. So what is there to do in this town for under-21-year-olds when almost every place inevitably gets shut down?
Reason No. 1: "The music that they play at these places promotes violent behavior."
Alright, that's a complete crock. I personally have been listening to rap music ever since I can remember. Once upon a time, KrissKross was considered music for the punks and gangsters. Yes, admittedly, over the years, rap and hip-hop music has developed a lot more gangster connotations. But it still is a music style that is very popular with a generation, and many people who listen to it do not fight and are not violent.
One can say the same thing about some of Marilyn Manson's songs. Any kind of lyrics can be taken out of context, but what we have to remember is that music is still a form or expression and people have different tastes.
Reason No. 2: "Security needs to be tighter."
Yes, this one is true. In 1999, on a normal 21-and-over night at The Wildcat House, there was a shooting that left one man dead and two others injured. This was on a normal night, people. On its teen nights, the Wildcat House used to have special security, but now they see the need for it every night of the week. The young crowd isn't the only one who gets feisty. Also, bar managers sometimes do not like to use metal detectors because it scares off customers. The older crowd gets drunk and more temperamental than the younger crowd ÷ which brings me to reason three.
Reason No. 3: "Over consumption of alcoholic beverages needs to be regulated."
When people drink at home, we really can't control them; but when they come to a bar, it is the responsibility of the establishment to see how much alcohol they sell to people. This can be difficult when there is a rush, but when there isn't, they should regulate how much alcohol they sell. It shouldn't be a race to make the most money even if half of your customers need to have their stomach pumped before the night is over.
As part of reason three, I am including giving alcohol to minors. We have a very attractive campus and many freshmen and sophomores go to the clubs during their 18-and-over nights, sneak into the bar area and grab a few drinks. The bar allows this illegal behavior to get more guys to come since they know that there are young, pretty, drunk girls at their establishment. And this is a serious offense to the safety of these girls and to integrity of the bar (that's not meant to be an oxymoron).
In conclusion, it is just as important for the bar as well as the customers to take responsibility for what happens each night. To the customers: Keep your guns and petty squabbles at home and enjoy what you are paying for. To the bar managers: Security and following all liquor and other laws is integral to our coming to your bar and legally buying drinks, as well as your bar staying open. I know that on 18-and-over nights the bars are packed like crazy with lines going around the block, because the younger crowd also wants to have fun in Tucson.
So what is still there for the younger college students to do when there is no bar to go to? Well · umm· not much, really. You just gotta grow up.