This will keep your weight down, protect your heart, and boost your brainpower but our government keeps this drug out of reach of the age group who need it most. 221.4 million of our fellow citizens in the past have allowed the most needing age group ranging from 18 years of age and above to enjoy the fruits of spirits. Do you side with the 221.4 million who lived under the law that allowed my peer group to drink. Or do you side with the debbie-downers of America who hold ridiculous laws that prohibited adults ranging from 18-20 the right to partake in the spirits? Most importantly if the minimum legal drinking age (MLDA) was lowered to 18 there would be less binge drinking and a much safer drinking environment.
One of the most obvious reason why the drinking age should be lowered to 18 is because our current prohibition laws are not working and instead it has pushed underaged bing drinking. 33% of the underage population have claimed to drink some alcohol, 18% of underaged drinkers claim to have been heavy drinkers, and 11% of America’s alcohol is consumed by underaged drinkers (Centers for disease control and prevention 2.) Instead of the age group being able to drink in licensed locations, they drink in unsupervised places such as fraternities or house parties where they be more prone to binge drinking. I believe as well as many others that if the drinking age was lowered to 18, Americans would cut down on the number of heavy drinkers and in turn create a safer drinking environment.
Kids are already drinking and are starting bad habits because they are rebelling against the laws that prohibit drinking, Dr.Ruth C Engs states “drinking by these youth is seen as an enticing forbidden fruit, a badge of rebellion against authority and a symbol of adulthood,” (3) which further explains why there is binge drinkers. If our government were to change the drinking age and allow children to be taught that alcohol is something to be enjoyed in moderation we would have created a much healthier drinking environment.
When you reach the age of 18 in America a lot of new responsibilities and rights come along with this; to vote, smoke cigarettes, serve on juries, get married, sign contracts, be prosecuted as adults, and join the military – which includes risking one’s life. If all of these responsibilities and rights come along with reaching adulthood, adults should have the right to make their own decisions on alcohol consumption.
Although lowering the MLDA 21 to 18 will allow binge drinking to decrease, it will allow greater portion of the population to drink alcohol in bars and nightclubs, which are not safe environments. Even though bars and nightclubs are deemed unsafe by Procon, America is the safest it has ever been so I find this claim to be useless in the argument against lowering the MLDA to 18. In our time period we have affordable means to catch a ride home if under the influence, many rape preventing tactics, and the policy responding in record times there is hardly anything that can be deemed unsafe in the twenty first century.
As I began typing this essay I didn’t even agree with lowering the MLDA to 18, but now that I’ve done my research I find it very beneficial for our society; as a country we would gain 11% more revenue on alcoholic beverages, the number of binge drinkers would decrease tremendously, and it would allow equality when you reach adulthood. The true problem with lowering the MLDA was safety but recent statistics that the country has been the safest it’s ever been and the number of DUI’s have decreased and have began to flat line. So I believe that this topic is very important and would benefit our country in terms of our financial situation and safety.
“Alcohol and Public Health.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,
https://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/underage-drinking.htm. Accessed 7 November 2017.
Engs, Ruth. “Why the drinking age should be lowered: An opinion based upon research.”
Indiana University, 1998,
http://www.indiana.edu/~engs/articles/cqoped.html. Accessed 7 November 2017
“Should the Drinking Age Be Lowered from 21 to a Younger Age.” ProCon,
https://drinkingage.procon.org/. Accessed 7 November 2017.