Debate Over the Legal Drinking Age

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The Debate Over the Legal Drinking Age

College life is filled with changes. It is filled with many new experiences. As college students, we are on our own, adults. As adults we are responsible for keeping up to date on information that affects us. One issue that affects college students nation wide is drinking. The current legal drinking age in the United States is twenty-one years of age. The Federal government raised the legal drinking age from 18 to 21 in 1984. Even with the current drinking age at twenty-one, many people under that age choose to drink anyway. In fact, a government survey from 1996 showed that 56% of high school seniors reported drinking in the last 30 days (Hanson). With so many underage drinkers, many people believe that the drinking age should be lowered, stating that people are going to drink, regardless of the legal age. Still others see the high number of underage drinkers as a sign that the legal age needs to stay where it is and stricter laws need to be implemented. With the extremely high number of underage drinking, we can assume that the current drinking age is relatively ineffective, and therefore we must ask ourselves: should the drinking age be lowered, or should we revise policies to make the current age more effective? It is important to view all sides of the issue before deciding which side to be on. We must look responsibly at the issue instead of saying that the drinking age should be lowered, simply because we are under 21. The current drinking age has many debatable sides, or approaches which need to be examined. Those approaches include lowering the drinking age because the current policies don?t work, lowering the drinking age because it would lead to more responsible drinking, kee...

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...drinking age should be lowered: An opinion based upon research. 1998. Oct 13 2002. <>.

Hanson, D. J. .. Youth Alcohol Policy. 1997. Oct 13, 2002. <>.

Kirby, Robert. "Study Confirms Parents' Suspicions: Teens Have as Much Sense as a Rock." The Salt Lake Tribune 1 August 2002: E1.

McArdle, Paul J.. "A Lower Drinking Age Wouldn't Lead to Responsible Alcohol Use" Letter. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 893 words, 9 June 2002: A6.

Pickerington, Matthew G.. "A Lower Drinking age Would Quiet the Riots" Letter. The Columbus Dispatch 296 words, 14 May 2002: 10A.

Stoner, Noah. "Dangers Abound with a Lower Drinking Age." Intelligencer Journal 19 January 2002: A-4 .

Wilson, Greg . "Pol Says Drop Age, Educate Kids." Daily News (New York) 15 July 2002: 1.

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