Drinking, Holidays and Seasons, Law School Deans, Law Schools

Halloween-over: Law School Bans Alcohol In Building Named After Beer

It’s Halloween tonight, don’t forget to wear a condom.

I know, that advice comes too late for most people. Most people had their Halloween parties over the weekend, tonight is for the kids. And it’s Christmas Day for dentists.

In fact, we’ve received reports that one Midwestern law school had quite a smashing little Halloween shindig. According to a tipster: “The front entrance to the law school was a minefield of vomit puddles.”

A spooky minefield of vomit and puddles?

In response, the law school is now banning alcohol. Which wouldn’t sound so ridiculous if it didn’t expose the intense hypocrisy of the “business” of legal education…

First, some more details on the “event” at Washington University in St. Louis School of Law. From a tipster:

This past Saturday WUSTL hosted its annual Halloween party at the law school’s Anheuser-Busch Hall. As the last big party before getting ready for finals, they kept the drinks flowing with an open bar. The Cardinals also beat the Red Sox that night just a few miles away, so baseball fans (which is most of the student body) were out to celebrate. The only limitation on alcohol was that they ran out of cups halfway through the party. Surprisingly, there were no real problems despite the copious amounts of booze- that is, until the end of the party. The students were all told to go home, and then hell broke loose.

The EMS and police were called, and two students were carted away (in costume; one was dressed as Quail-man from Nickelodeon’s “Doug,” effectively ending that which remained of childhood innocence). The front entrance to the law school was a minefield of vomit puddles. Several students tried to sleep off their intoxicated state in the hallways, but were woken up and driven out by the cops. Some succeeded by sneaking into the group study rooms in the library, waking up there early on Sunday morning as the more ambitious students came in to start their outlining. To make matters worse, there were no cabs as they were all filled with people out celebrating the Cardinals.

Can we all just take a step back and marvel at how All Hallow’s Eve has gone from a feast day, to a pumpkin holocaust, to an excuse for poor children to get treats, to the worship of the military-confectionery complex, to a masquerade ball with prostitutes, to “the last big party before getting ready for finals.” It’s amazing. I think Halloween is so goddamn popular because it was like the first form of internet commenting: you got to wear a mask in public and thought that it meant you could act like a complete asshole.

In any event, sounds like it was a good party. I’m sure EMS was already prepared for a spike in drinking-related sadness.

The law school administration was not impressed. Washington University Law Dean Kent Syverud sent around a memo outlining new changes for law school events:

They’re banning alcohol in the law school building? They’re banning alcohol in Anheuser-Busch Hall? Oh, what tangled webs we weave when our lust for funding compromises the integrity of our cherished institutions. Maybe, and I’m just spit-balling here, but maybe naming things after famous beer makers at an educational institution doesn’t exactly send the right message in the first place? Traditions are fine and all, but it’s not like Texas Law would name a building after a Klansman. Wait, actually forget I said that.

You can read Dean Syverud’s full memo on the next page. You can see that one of the real problems here was that the event had to be held at the law school, because the students couldn’t find a venue to go to during the World Series. It sure sounds like the law school is less concerned about providing for the health and safety of its students, and more concerned with dram shop laws and not wanting to get sued if one of the students drinks themselves into a coma “at a law school event.”

If “safety” was really paramount, they’d encourage people to drink at the law school, which is arguably closer to their homes, and maybe the law school could also kick in a free car service to ferry the kids home.

Maybe Anheuser-Busch InBev can sponsor the alcohol? Hmm? See, nice Elie always tries to help…

(hidden for your protection)

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