….a Neknomination ain’t one

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The start of something bad?

The start of something bad?

Idiocy is not a substitute for creativity

Article: Paige Kreutzwieser – Staff Writer

Taking things to the extreme isn’t something new for people of our generation. We’ve taken sports to the ultimate, adapted food to the unreasonable, and now we’ve brought drinking to a whole new level—a potentially lethal level.

Drinking has, no doubt, become an issue for teens and young adults. With binge drinking on the rise and peer pressure a constant, competition and booze has become a common combination.

It has also become a fatal one.

This spurs from the recent controversial online drinking game Neknominations.What started out as a “harmless bit of fun between mates” has turned into the cause of five deaths thus far around the globe.

The original purpose was to record oneself “necking” (chugging) a bottle of beer then nominating a “mate” to the challenge, which was to be completed within 24 hours, and posting it online for friends to see.

The mantra for the creators was “Neck and Nominate: Neck your drink. Nominate another. Don’t break the chain. Don’t be a dick.” But as social media tends to do, it took this mates club battle cry, shortened it, and added a hashtag.

#Neknomination was born.

It seems that many of the people who have participated don’t seem to know where this game grew it roots – or even why. The comradery of the nominations has turned into a showboating do-or-die. And unfortunately the latter has happened.

As said, fives deaths have been linked to the game. Five may seem like a small number, but the game has only really been in the public eye for a couple years. And, consider what they have “necked.” One man downed a pint containing kitchen cleaner, de-icer, chilli powder, and vodka. Another United Kingdom man drank 37 units of gin mixed with tea bags – the UK government guidelines for one week 21 units. Concoctions of cider and urine, gravy and beer, and not to mention the myriad of combinations of wine, vodka, gin, tequila, beer, whiskey or any other alcoholic beverage you can think of.

Universities have been put in the spotlight, especially Student Unions. Our own president, Nathan Sgrazutti, has been quoted saying that it’s not URSU’s place to tell students what not to do.

Surprisingly enough for a Carillon writer, I have to agree with him.

Although Neknominations have been associated with the university student age category, telling our student union president to babysit his peers outside of school is an exhausting task, considering the other important things I would hope he would be paying attention to involve my university career.

I know we want our president to lead by example, but along with the rest of us, I am sure he does not condone anyone mixing kitchen cleaner and vodka together.

Neknominations are a form of peer pressure that you just have to have a head on your shoulders about. If you are more worried that you won’t get as many “likes” on your video as the nominee before you than I have some motherly advice: grow a backbone.

You also have the option to take a stance yourself, like the one man who instead of going the liquor route, chugged a pint of tea. Or the McGill student, when nominated, changed his request to “feed the deed” and nominated friends to do a good deed instead.

The choice is yours, not mine, not our student president’s, not your friends’. You can still get 100 “likes” on your video – it’s called being creative, not being an extreme idiot.

Image: Emily Wright

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