Problem: Can I Take My Baby Monitor to the Bar?

Q: My husband and I live above a bar and, naturally, patronize it several times a week. It does not serve food, so according to state law, minors cannot enter. This has not been a problem for us so far, but we are expecting the arrival of our very first minor in just a few weeks. Can we leave a sleeping baby in our apartment and go down to the bar? It is right downstairs, easily within the range of our baby monitor. People have babies in those giant suburban houses with, like, five floors, and nobody says anything.

—L.P.
Dover, Del.


Dear L.P.,

I think this is a question better directed to Parenting magazine. Or maybe Alcoholics Anonymous. But let me give it a shot: no, you may not go down to the bar to drink while your baby is alone in your apartment. However, why don’t you try re-creating a barlike atmosphere in your apartment? Leave your baby monitor downstairs and listen to the sounds of your friends getting drunk while you do the same, but in close proximity to your baby.

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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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