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College Spring Break

Updated on August 7, 2011

My spring break began on Friday, and of course, everyone has asked me if I am going down to Florida or some place like that. Apparently, these people are completely clueless as to who they are speaking too. I am not against having a break from college, but I am against "celebrating" spring break as the stereotypical college student does. However, once again let me clarify that I am not going to tell people what to do. If someone wants to go down to a beach with a horde of other students, drink inordinate amounts of alcohol, take an inordinate amount of drugs, and sleep around that is his damn business. That is his choice, and he has a right to make that choice. I actually argue that he should be able to choose each one of those elements without fear of being attacked by the law. However, I find a problem with this stereotypical spring break because it is riddled with collectivism and irrationality.

I would argue that both of these elements of the stereotypical spring break are pretty easy to understand, but the easiest might be the collectivist part. Every television shot of a spring break includes an enormous horde of people, and the living arrangements for the spring break duration also includes mobs of people packed close together. This would not be so bad if all these people were friends because they would have chosen to be together. However, most of these people are strangers. Of course, no one is forcing all these strangers to live closely together they do choose it themselves, but one should be concerned as to why these strangers like being close together. This is the collectivist aspect. People like this cannot make themselves happy. These people are not truly independent and thus they are not truly individualistic. In order to be happy they need to be around a whole mass of people. They depend on others to make them happy instead of being responsible for their own happiness. One may argue that my argument also attacks friendship. This is not so. Friendship is based on selfishness not dependence like the spring break horde. In friendship an individual chooses another individual because he values the person more than all other individuals. A friend is chosen because the friend meets the chooser's standards, and the chooser recognizes the friend as better than other people. Spring break is distinctly different. The individual who goes to the stereotypical spring break chooses to be crammed into a mob of hundreds of people he does not know. He does not subject the individuals of this horde to any standard. He openly accepts them and rarely assigns a selfish value to any of them. The individual depends on the collective to make him happy instead of making himself happy by choosing a friend he values more than all other people. In essence what occurs at the stereotypical spring break is an individual becomes part of a collective. In a friendship one individual selfishly chooses another individual, and other other individual selfishly chooses the choosing individual. In friendship individuality and independence are maintained, in the stereotypical spring break the individual becomes dependent and adopts the collective identity to be happy.

I believe the purpose of life is to be happy; therefore, it would appear I would be in favor of the generic spring break because people are just making a capitalistic exchange to be happy. However, I would argue that these people are not truly happy. A person that must depend on others to be happy is not happy. A person who engages is such activity is also self-loathing. Since the person is hates himself he searches for other people who like him in order to make himself feel better. In other words, the individual needs others to affirm his existence instead of affirming his own existence himself. This is also present in sleeping around. Obviously, sleeping around is of a collectivist nature because the individual assigns little selfish value to his own body and in turn shares it with several people. The selfish and proud individual is extremely selective as to who he sleeps with because he assigns a high value to his own body; therefore, he only sleeps with people he values highly. Thus, sleeping around is just the same as the rest of the collectivist activities at spring break. The person who sleeps around dislikes himself and dislikes his body; consequently, he seeks other people to sleep with him in order to make him believe he is a good person and his body is not as bad as he believes it is. Once again the individual depends on others to affirm his existence instead of affirming his own existence.

This is clearly all extremely irrational; however, the most irrational element is the inordinate amount of drinking. Drinking alcohol is not like drinking water, or juice, or soda. Of course, alcohol affects one's mental capacity in a certain way, but that is not what I am talking about here. Alcohol has a purpose which water, juice, and soda do not have. Alcohol is the drink of celebration. People drink alcohol when they have accomplished something, and I do not mean they accomplished something like, "Yeah I made it to Florida for spring break." Doing that required no skill, no work, no creativity, no thought. You went to airport, bought a ticket, and got on a plane. That is no reason to celebrate. Producing, creating, achieving, and accomplishing something difficult something that requires skill, though, work, and creativity is a reason to celebrate. Writing and book and having it published is a reason to celebrate. Making a movie is a reason to celebrate. Graduating from college and high school is also a reason to celebrate. Those events are what alcohol is for. This is also all very rational. The drink that causes decreased mental capacity is saved for celebrating. It is saved for the period after intense mental thought and work. It is saved for the period of relaxation, the period of delayed gratification, between two projects. Of course, the irrational mob uses alcohol whenever. They strip alcohol of its rational meaning. They devalue alcohol by overly using it. Of course, that is their right to choose to engage in such activities, but just because it is their right does not make it correct. It is not virtuous to behave irrationally. However, that is what people on spring break do. Additionally, people who overuse and devalue alcohol actually admit that alcohol is supposed to only be saved for celebrations because they create pseudo-celebrations in order to drink. Spring break is disguised to look like a massive party; however, the party has absolutely no meaning. Therefore, people on spring break are striping meaning from alcohol and from celebrations.


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    • gmwilliams profile image

      Grace Marguerite Williams 6 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

      You are quite a mature young man. I applaud you. You will someday be highly successful and a great leader. You have already demonstrated your individuality and your refusal to adhere to the pack herd mentality!

    • sallykwitt profile image

      sallykwitt 6 years ago

      Glad that you have a good head on your shoulders. You will do well in life.