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Do you really know where your teenagers are?

June 14, 2011 8:00 am Published by 2 Comments

It’s Wednesday night and I am getting ready to go out with my friends to a club in West Hollywood. I am the designated driver and 23 years old. The destination is to an 18-and-over club that I have never been to before.

Walking in is an amazing experience. The music is so loud and dancing figures are everywhere. The amazing part about it is that I run into a bunch of teens that live down the street from me, all the way in Ventura. Okay, some are 18 but some are barely 15-16. It has me questioning both the parents and the club promoters.

The club promoters don’t check ID unless you are going to drink in the bar area — they are not checking ID to make sure that you are old enough to be attending. To me, it just seems as though they only really care about getting their money and not making sure they do not allow anyone underage from drinking. By the end of the night there were about four fights and the cops was called.

On the drive home I started to wonder about the parents of the kids I saw. How well do they know their teenagers? Do they know that they went out to an over-18 club in Hollywood on a school night? I wonder if they even know exactly what their teens really do outside of the house. How do parents sleep at night not paying attention to their children? Do they not realize that Hollywood is a long way from Ventura? Anything can happen from the drive there and the drive home. It’s terrifying to know that I even allow myself to do that every once in awhile.

How can we contact clubs and make sure this isn’t being allowed to happen? There are many new clubs opening around Ventura County that are directed to the 18-and-over crowd. I have not been to them so I cannot assume that they too allow underage teenagers to attend. But really, how well are these clubs’ regulations being maintained?

You need an ID to smoke cigarettes and drink a beer. An ID should be used to get in any type of club. Not only that, but parents really needed to keep their eyes on their children.

Laura K is a 23-year-old student in Ventura, majoring in Human Services at Ventura College.