A recent study
by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration revealed that underage drinking is especially rampant in sparsely populated states like Wyoming, Montana, and North and South Dakota. Some counties in Wyoming reported binge-drinking rates that were 50% above the national average. Both authorities and teenagers say that boredom and a feeling of isolation are primary reasons for high drinking percentages.
"Friday nights in Cody can mean football and a movie, but after 11 o'clock, with nothing else to do, teenagers say they head to somebody's ranch or into the mountains toward Yellowstone National Park to drink."
Authorities also say parents play a role by not disciplining their children when they're caught drinking, and sometimes by even encouraging underage drinking as a "rite of passage."
Posted By: Lori S