Serving Time at Church Instead of Jail

Here's your feedback on two of the controversies we covered today on “DaySide.” First, the Wisconsin lawmaker's proposal to lower the state drinking age from 21 to 19 — for soldiers only. Although the studio audience was 85 percent against it, the e-mail coming in is more like 30 percent against:

As a military member I think that the legal age should be lowered all over the [U.S.]. I turn 21 next month, so any change will not affect me. If we go overseas we can drink in most countries. Why not in the country that we are fighting for?
—Sr. A. Jennings, USAF, Eglin AFB

As an active duty service member, since we all drink anyway, why not just make it legal?
—D. Hill, Kentucky

It's not about honoring them... it's about respecting them being able to make an adult decision. If they can make the choice to make the ultimate sacrifice then aren't they adult enough to have a drink?

But here's another perspective from someone in the military:

Seeing what alcohol does to my fellow military men and women, I wouldn't allow drinking at all.
—Ssgt. Jason Pearson, USAF

Now on to the Kentucky judge who's offering drug and alcohol offenders the option to go to church instead of jail:

Judges have been using rehab as a sentencing option for years. In a rehab they use the 12 Step program in which one of the first steps is admitting that theirs is a higher power (a God). So why is the church option any different?
—Doug Kifolo, State College, Pennsylvania

I'm a recovering alcoholic. I've been to jail, church, and rehab. It's well documented that jail doesn't rehabilitate. Church seems like a pretty 'easy out' to me. INPATIENT rehab, to those willing to admit the problem, absolutely is the best hope to turn oneself around. Being an alcoholic, in itself, is punishment and certainly not a choice. Sitting in jail just reinforces resentments.

With that, I'm leaving you. But only for two weeks' vacation. See you all soon!


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