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Alice Yang
Yang is a contributing columnist for the Fort Bend Star.
She is a student at Stephen F. Austin High School-FBISD.

This column expresses the personal opinions/views of the writer. If you would like to express your opinions/views regarding the column, write a SIGNED letter to the editor. Name can be withheld by request with a valid day time phone number.
Oh the privileges!  

Iím officially 18 years old as of last Saturday. Yeah, that day when the crazy arctic front hit in the middle of a Houstonian April that made me turn on the heater. Even Mother Nature is ringiní it in for olí Al.

Anyway, so 18. What a momentous number. I expected a change you know. But same old same old. Living with parents, holding a curfew, strapped to a 7-hour high school schedule. So what rights do I exactly gain that are useful? I actually went online to search for a list in case some small gem of a privilege evades me. Here are the highlights of the most unalienable rights.

1. Ability to buy culinary stuff from TV commercials. Yeah, you know that set of kitchen knives beautifully done in stainless steel with the added bonus of a fruit miracle mincer if you call within the next ten minutes? Well, all mine. I can officially call the 1-800 number and legally order anything I see on TV. Oh I canít wait!

2. Own property. Wow, just the thing I need because Iíve had my eyes on that million-dollar mansion for quite a while now. Forget this family; Iím moviní out!

3. Marry. Time to head to Vegas with my long time lover and do the white chapel thing Britney Spears style. Where are you K-Fed?

4. Star in an X-rated video. Finally it wonít be called child pornography!

5. Bear arms and be drafted. Right. Because every fresh 18 year old girl would love to own a gun and use it.

6. Smoke. Of course I didnít try it when I was younger because like alcohol, it was impossible to obtain. Now, I will start just because Iím of age.

7. Vote. Useful for someone who is apolitical.

The worldís most coveted rights huh? 18 is the year when society dictates ďyou are legal, and the world knows it.Ē No matter how mature or responsible you are before the benchmark, no rights before we think you, and the rest of the nation, are ready.

Conversely, no matter how immature and irresponsible you are, as long as youíre 18, the number decides your rights more effectively than your character. Then, people suddenly view you differently, like, welcome to the adult world; your age tells me that you are a Major, not a Minor, a Woman, not a Girl.

Who decided these rules anyway? And why is it that we can smoke but not drink until three years later?

Anyway, Iíd have to say, the only privileges in effect so far are no more pesky parental consent forms in school and not having to drive down to Rosenberg waiting in a two hour line to renew that license every year.

(P.S. Readers of my last column, there has been an editorial mistake and the article was truncated at a very inconvenient place. The complete column is on the Starís website under 4/4/07.)

Yang is a contributing columnist for the Fort Bend Star. She is a student in FBISD.

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   Last Update:  May 02, 2007