BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Spanish Portuguese Caribbean
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Americas  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS
Monday, 25 November, 2002, 18:25 GMT
Bush twins come of age
Jenna (L) and Barbara Bush in a July 2001 photograph
The Bush daughters' privacy is jealously guarded

The White House will probably heave a huge sigh of relief.

The gossip columnists are more likely to feel a twinge of loss.

As for President George W Bush's twin daughters, Jenna and Barbara, most likely they will celebrate with a round of drinks.

The reason: the much talked about young ladies have come of age.

They have just been celebrating their 21st birthday.

And that means, finally, they can legally drink alcohol in the United States.

Prohibition

It must be said, the taste will not be entirely new to them.

Both have had brushes with the law for drinking in bars under age, over a year ago.

Even this summer they were widely reported to have been spotted drinking - and smoking - in "Stetson's" Texas-themed bar in Washington.


They will no longer be afforded any mercy or consideration for their age by the press. They will become fair game to the country's preoccupation with the private lives of public people

Patti Davis, President Reagan's daughter
This time the law seems to have been looking the other way.

As the young Bushes know only too well, the United States is country with an unforgiving attitude to alcohol.

In "the land of the free" there are still some people who seem to yearn for the days of prohibition.

The police in Washington have been known to snoop outside private gardens to check there are no 20-year-olds going anywhere near a drink.

On one BBC office outing the waiters in a downtown restaurant insisted on "carding" the whole party, demanding to see proof of age from all the team, including one correspondent who was about to retire, and had the grey hair to prove it !

One lengthy article in one of the country's most serious newspapers reported recently - and most disapprovingly - about how many of the undergraduates at some of Britain's smartest universities spend much of their time drunk.

For most students here in the United States alcohol remains an illegal, and guilty pleasure, though the stories of binge-drinking are legend.

Bit of advice

The Bush twins themselves have been spending their birthday at the presidential ranch in Crawford, Texas, well away from public view.

The press has not been briefed on precisely how wild the party has been, but that has not prevented the media from offering plenty of advice.

A columnist in the New York Daily News suggests the twins burn the fake ID cards and pay a victorious visit to the bar in Texas where they were busted a year ago.

There are more words of wisdom from perhaps a better informed source - Patti Davis, daughter of former President Ronald Reagan.

After their 21st birthday, she warns, "they will no longer be afforded any mercy or consideration for their age by the press. They will become fair game to the country's preoccupation with the private lives of public people."

The Daily News has one other eminently sensible piece of advice, bearing in mind their father's recent experience with salted snacks.

Whatever the girls drink, be most careful about the Pretzels!

See also:

06 Jul 01 | Americas
08 Jun 01 | Americas
17 Oct 02 | Americas
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Americas stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Americas stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes