Raising the Drivng Age to 18

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Stacie Asberry
9:30-10:20 A.M.
RAISING THE DRIVING AGE TO EIGHTEEN WILL REDUCE THE NUMBER OF ACCIDENTS AMONG TEENAGERS Raising the driving age to eighteen will reduce the number of accidents among teenagers. Records show that “motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death of Americans between fifteen and twenty years of age.” (Nationwide Driver License Standards Will Save Lives). In the state of Virginia, lawmakers have taken measures to protect their teenage drivers by passing curfew and passenger restrictions. “Virginia’s curfew laws prohibit a driver under age 18 who holds a learner’s permit or driver’s license from driving midnight to 4 A.M. If you are under age 18, you may carry only one passenger under age 18 during the first year that you old your driver’s license. After you have held your license for one year, you may carry only three passengers under age 18 until you reach age 18.” (Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles). According to the article Is 16 Too Young to Drive a Car?, Scientists have found that the part of the brain that weighs risks, makes judgments, and controls impulsive behaviors is still developing during the teenage years. They have also found that a sixteen year old’s brain is generally less developed in this area than that of a teen just a few years older.” Also in this article, it states that “one in five sixteen-year-olds will be involved in a car crash within the first year of getting their driver’s license.” While it is true that more teenagers get in accidents than adults, it is also true that the brain is not fully developed until middle twenties. So why are penalizing this age group only? Most teenagers feel that they need their driver’s license to take themselves to and from school, to get a job, and to attend extra-curricular activities. Having a car to do these things makes them feel more independent and with those feelings come a lot of responsibility. It should be up to their parents to...
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