Not Lowering the Drinking Age

Topics: Drinking culture, Alcoholism, Alcoholic beverage Pages: 5 (1626 words) Published: August 3, 2011
Bryan Blejski
ENG 101-010
Ms. Abbott
28 July 2011
Not Lowering the Drinking Age
Many teenage deaths in the United States are caused in some way by the influence of alcohol; however, many people still believe that the legal drinking age should be reduced to eighteen. This issue has been going on for years, but the law has not been changed since the change to twenty-one in 1980. States have become stricter about preventing under-age drinking, but teenagers have no problem getting alcohol. There are many arguments in favor of changing the drinking age back to eighteen. The facts show that drinking alcohol is too large of a responsibility for an eighteen-year-old to handle. In 1980 the government raised the drinking age to twenty-one because the number of drunk driving accidents was causing many teen-age deaths. The young adults of America considered this law a second prohibition. Prohibition was the period in United States history in which the manufacture, sale, and transportation of intoxicating liquors was outlawed. The push for Prohibition began in the beginning of the nineteenth century. After the American Revolution, drinking was on the rise. To combat this, a number of societies were organized as part of a new Temperance movement which attempted to dissuade people from becoming intoxicated. At first, these organizations pushed moderation, but after several decades, the movement's focus changed to complete prohibition of alcohol consumption. The Temperance movement blamed alcohol for many of society's ills, especially crime and murder. The problem with the arguments for lowering the legal drinking age is it is simply not in the best interest of the public's safety to do so. Teenagers who drink are a danger to themselves and others -- especially on the highways. The drinking age was first lowered to eighteen in many states back in the Vietnam War era. The country was asking thousands of its young men to fight and die for their country on foreign soil, so the popular thinking was, "How can we ask them to die for their country and not let them have a drink if they want one?" But the lower drinking age begin to take a toll on the nation's highways. The number of alcohol-related traffic fatalities began to rise at alarming rates, and a high percentage of those involved young drivers. Congress again put pressure on the states to raise the drinking age because of this startling increase in highway deaths. Many groups perform a series of arguments about the status of legal drinking age and few seem happy to leave it at twenty-one, where it has been for many years. One persistent argument in the discussion is on youth rights and privileges, means the age at which you can drink alcohol legally should be lowered to the age where you obtain right to vote and die for your country, eighteen. Currently, the legal drinking age is twenty-one in the U.S., which is higher than the legal drinking age in many other developed countries. Supporters with an argument for lowering the drinking age, argue that if you have certain rights and obligations that seem more "adult" in a younger age that are fighting for the country, pay taxes and they marry, should be able to drink. These supporters who make this argument to lower the legal drinking age also suggest that the current legal drinking age simply encourages the illegal use of alcohol, many teenagers have tried alcohol, and some heavily and persistently before they reach the age of twenty-one. Although the above argument for lowering the drinking age may be most logical, it is a more convincing and persuasive argument. Research confirms the argument that the legal drinking age should be twenty-one, in short, adolescents have not developed the cognitive mechanisms, social, and psychological need to make thoughtful decisions and logically about alcohol and also, their bodies have not completed their physical maturation. The government’s changing the legal age to drink from twenty-one to...

Cited: Heath, Dwight B. International Handbook on Alcohol and Culture. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1995. Print.
Heather, Nick, and Tim Stockwell. The Essential Handbook of Treatment and Prevention of Alcohol Problems. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2004. Print.
Loeb, Peter D., Wayne K. Talley, and Thomas J. Zlatoper. Causes and Deterrents of Transportation Accidents: An Analysis by Mode. Westport, CT: Quorum, 1994. Print.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent and Reduce Underage Drinking. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2007. [Electronic Version].
United States. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Federal Highway Administration. Highway Safety Program Standards. GPO, 1973. Print.
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Lowering the Drinking Age Essay
  • Lowering the Drinking Age Essay
  • Lowering the Drinking Age Essay
  • Lowering the Drinking Age to 18 Essay
  • Essay on Lowering the Drinking Age
  • Alcohol: Lowering the Legal Drinking Age Essay
  • PRO Lowering Drinking Age Essay
  • lowering the drinking age Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free