NYRA Freedom

ISSN 1933-5229
Volume 7, Issue 9
September 8, 2007
Editors: Victoria Minerva Rodrguez Roldn and Harry Lambrianou

Table of Contents

-Debate Rages Regarding the Drinking Age
-Opponent?s Reactions to the Drinking Age Debate
-Kid Nation Chronicles
-New Board, New officers
-News From the Web
“The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently.” –Friedrich Nietzsche

This month has been a month of triumphs, successes and new potential for NYRA. The drinking age has stepped to the forefront of media coverage in a way and fashion we have never seen before in the ten years since NYRA?s foundation. NYRA has appeared on numerous television channels and radio stations, even newspapers. This passing month of August has been one of large potential in the drinking age. The new month of September must be one where we reap the seeds sown.

Debate Rages Regarding the Drinking Age

Spearheaded by John M. McCardell, Jr. and his organization, Choose Responsibility, the campaign to lower the national drinking age is finally gathering real momentum. NYRA is right there beside Dr. McCardell, and the media is listening. Our members have been interviewed on the radio, television, and in newspapers in more than 20 cities across the country. ABC News, Parade Magazine, MSNBC, and the Wall Street Journal ? as well as a host of local papers ? have all given Choose Responsibility and NYRA positive press this month.
New studies, such as one by the CDC suggesting that those who are free to drink legally tend to drink less dangerously than those who are forced to do so underground, lend increasing weight to our cause, debunking the age-old myths and ?facts? used to uphold what Dr. McCardell calls a ?bad social policy and terrible law.?Never before has an assault on this too-long-maintained institution been so positively received.

Opponent’s Reactions in the Drinking Age debate

The debate on the drinking age and NYRA?s appearance in it has been so successful that even Mothers Against Drunk Driving is getting afraid. They have sent out national alerts in response to the flurry of media coverage for lowering the drinking age urging their members not to be swayed. But truth is on our side. The truth that lowering the drinking age will encourage moderate, responsible, and ultimately safer drinking in this country and respect the rights of young adults who have all the legal rights and responsibilities of adulthood at 18 but yet can?t drink legally. The truth is that the drinking age in the United States is one of the largest acts of hypocrisy against youth being done at this instant. The truth is on our side, and the truth always in the end prevails. For more information, you can go to NYRA?s blog entry. http://blog.youthrights.org/2007/08/15/were-making-madd-nervous/

Kid Nation Chronicles

This Fall, national network CBS is planning a new reality show; 40 kids, ages 8-15, allowed to build their own society in the New Mexico desert. Called Kid Nation, it has been the center of media controversy even before its proposed September 19 release.
From a Youth Rights standpoint, the show could be boom or bust. If the children perform admirably, it shows that they can perform admirably that they can build their own society with little to no adult interference. Such an outcome would shatter the dense illusion that is modern adolescence. If they perform badly, it could be a harsh blow, reinforcing the stereotypes used to hold the young down.
Critics, leery of anything that could cast children in a non-traditional light, are already up in arms to protect them, claiming everything from violation of child labor laws to reckless endangerment. News services already highlight a single incident of a child burnt with splattered grease while cooking, while neglecting to mention the other 39 children who may have exceeded all expectations.
By comparison, while parents’ groups are outraged over the abuses perceived during Kid Nation, only one charity has expressed any concern about the UK television series Brat Camp, a veritable testament to the behavior modification industry. These concerns focused on the message that tough love can solve any problem not on whether or not being abducted by your new instructors and trekking through the woods for days on end is abusive.
CBS themselves have high expectations for the show, and as of this writing have already begun casting for a second edition, expecting it to become a franchise similar to Survivor. Read more here: http://blog.youthrights.org/2007/08/28/supporting-the-kid-nation-secession/

New Board, New Officers

One of the first actions of any new board of directors is to appoint its officers. NYRA is no exception. In the ever important first board meeting of the 2007 – 2008 cycle new officers were appointed to their respective positions. The Presidency was attained by Adam King from North Carolina who has been until now Vice President of NYRA. Chip Sinton from Florida and who lost the election to the board, became Treasurer for this year. Katrina Moncure, Chapter Formation Representative and board member for several years, from Maryland, became Secretary. Stefan Muller from New York and who just became a board member is Vice President. Together, they are the officers of NYRA for the 2007 – 2008 cycle. Read more about them here: http://www.youthrights.org/staff.php

News From the Web

The News From the Web section continues to use the new format, separating between Domestic and International news stories. This section contains those news stories dated since the release of the last issue of NYRA Freedom, 16 August 2007.
Torture school subjects children to lethal punishments
Association petitions lowered drinking age
All Stirred Up
Debate Over Lowering Drinking Age Stirred Locally
Sixteen Candles, but Few Blazing a Trail to the Ballot Box
AFTRA To Probe Kid Nation
’80s MADD warrior takes up battle anew
Error in Arkansas law allows kids to marry
Intelligent support for lowering drinking age
Paterson Girl Saves 34 From Fast-Moving Fire
Now police are told they can use Taser guns on children
Leave the kids alone
The death of the teenager?
Maths genius wins university place, aged 9
Drinking age should be 21: Govt. Make it 18
Extra police drafted in to deal with teenagers celebrating results
Girl’s return to Peru sparks effort to help orphans
UK School Uniforms May Soon Have GPS
Legal drinking age rise dismissed
Should teenagers need parental consent for a piercing?


This has been a month of high energy for our cause. With media attention finally in our favor, we look to our fearless members and our board of directors to continue to guide us in a right direction. We stand strong, and though recent events give us hope, ours is and must be a cautious optimism. We are not unopposed, and the battle to change long-seated public thought cannot be easily won. Still, progress has been made. It is a worthy cause for celebration. May we meet in victory when next month?s issue comes round.