Lower Drinking Age to 18

Topics: Drinking culture, Legal drinking age, National Minimum Drinking Age Act Pages: 2 (686 words) Published: April 14, 2014
Minimum Drinking Age
According to the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, in 2010 underage drinkers from ages 15-20 were responsible for 48.8% of alcohol purchases. The minimum legal drinking age(MLDA) in the United States was 18 years old until 1984, when all fifty states raised their legal drinking age to 21 or older. The drinking age should be lowered from 21 years old to 18 years old because at that age one legally becomes an adult, it would reduce the amount of unsafe drinking activity, and there are fewer drunk driving car accidents in many other countries with a drinking age of 18. In the United States at the age of eighteen you receive the rights and responsibilities of adulthood. As an adult you should be able to make your own decisions on drinking alcohol. You can vote, smoke cigarettes, serve on juries, get married, sign contracts, be prosecuted as adults, and join the military. It is known that alcohol consumption can interfere with development of the young adult brain's frontal lobes. The frontal lobes are essential for functions such as emotional regulation, planning, and organization. However, the decisions you can make as an adult include risking one's life. Among these decisions should be alcohol consumption because as an adult you have the right to participate in actions that affect your health. Former Middlebury College president John McCardell wrote a New York Times op-ed that called the current drinking age “bad social policy and a terrible law.” It is a bad social policy because college is where you start making new relationships that could potentially last your entire life and to create such bonds it would be nice to just be able to talk over some beers. Allowing eighteen year olds to legally drink in regulated environments would decrease the amount of unsafe drinking activity. Bars and clubs are potentially unsafe environments, but they are supervised by employees. Prohibiting 18-20 year olds from drinking in such...
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