“No minors, please” means what it says

It came to my attention very recently that the words printed and underlined on

event admission tickets as well as on every flyer and public notice that read,

“No minors, please,” are meaningless and ignored by a few people. And when

these very people are politely and quietly questioned about having their

under-age children – some as young as 10 and 11 years old – in attendance at a

function where the main attraction is food and wine-tasting, their response is

that they were not stopped at the door.

It is true that they should have

been. However, they also admit freely that they knew the child should not be

there, but, “after all, he or she wasn’t being served any wine,” therefore, “it

should be OK.”

Not true. In addition to being in the area where the event

is taking place, the child is frequently nowhere near the parents and is

oftentimes left to wander about on his or her own, darting in and out of groups

of adults who are definitely not expecting a child to be underfoot.

Be

advised that there are definite reasons for the words “No minors, please” to be

printed on tickets and on public notices. Many local organizations hold food

and wine-tasting fund-raising events annually. From the money raised at these

events, they are able to offer scholarships to Kauai’s students and to donate

funds to such groups as Toys for Tots and Kaua’i Children’s Discovery Museum.

Just one minor child in attendance where liquor is being served could put all

of those things in jeopardy and actually be responsible for that particular

organization never being granted a special-function liquor license in the

future.

Perhaps these parents weren’t aware of all the necessary details,

health inspections and licenses that are required by the state of Hawai’i in

order to hold an event where food and wine is being served. None of us who are

involved in this type of fund-raising wants to have our extremely worthy

philanthropic efforts be terminated.

One must understand that these

fund-raisers are completely different from those large banquet parties where

complete sit-down dinners are served in a hotel setting. Taking a child to

those is the same as adults taking a child to a restaurant where liquor may be

ordered at the table. The laws governing minors in those establishments are

completely different and do not apply here. It’s rather like comparing apples

and oranges.

All that every one of us who are involved in fund-raising

organizations is asking is that people obey the laws of the state of Hawai’i.

These are not the organizations’ laws that have been made up on the spur of the

moment as an annoyance to the public. When a ticket or notice has “No minors,

please” printed on it, please don’t bring them with you. In a crowded

condition, you and your child may slip past the person at the door, but when

you’re asked to leave, do so graciously.

Please show your kokua. “No

minors, please” means no one under 21 years of age. Period.

G.

Stoddard

Wailua

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