Lowering the Drinking Age

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Maria Lawson
SOC210
02/28/2012

Short Paper #1
Lowering The Drinking Age

Throughout the United States, there is a huge debate on lowering the drinking age. The current legal drinking age in the United States is 21 years old, but there has been dispute on whether lowering it would be beneficial or if retaining it or increasing it would be more favorable for our society. In an article, titled “Lower Drinking Age Could Have Sobering Results”, which was written by Robert Voas in 2006, the author asserts that lowering the minimum legal drinking age of twenty-one has been “one of the most” successful laws in the United States, so why would people consider changing it? Robert Voas is very enthusiastic about his opinion throughout this article, but it is unreliable when it comes to determining the facts. Throughout this article, the author repeatedly argues that lowering the drinking age in the United States would not be a positive choice and in turn will be devastation for everyone. The author gives examples of the most common reasons people provide when it comes to lowering the drinking age: if a person is old enough to go to war, then they should be old enough to drink, or people who are not of the legal drinking age will want to drink more because of this law, or older generations saying that they drank when they were young and ended up being okay at the end, etc. Robert Voas then argues against these well-known repeated lines and supports his opinion with researches that have been done in the past.

Although his argument is strong, the author refers to evidence or researches without providing actual references. It starts off when he argued against lowering the drinking age for military personnel: “ask platoon leaders and unit commanders: they’ll tell you the last thing they want is young soldiers drinking” (Voas, 2006), then when opposing the argument that the young have more desire to drink because of the current legal drinking age: “research shows that...
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