Lowering the Drinking Age

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Lowering the Drinking Age Imagine spending over $250 on a beer. Currently, Wisconsin law reprimands underage drinking offenses with multiple fines and penalties. For any offence, penalties range from fines, suspension of driving priveleges, participation in supervised work programs, or a combination thereof. The first offence costs between $250 and $500. If a second offence is within a twelve month period, fines of up to $300-$500, a third offence raises the bill to $500-$750, and $750-$1,000 is the price tag of fourth and subsequent offences. In all fifty states, it is illegal to purchase or consume alcoholic beverages if you are under the age of twenty-one. Many people agree with this legal restriction and some would even say that it should be raised. However, the legal drinking age sometimes causes more problems that it prevents. First, it is necessary to question this law. Why is twenty-one the "magical" age that makes one intelligent and mature enough to consume alcohol? This seemingly random number is associated with adulthood, as if the day a person turns twenty-one they know everything and are mature. At the age of eighteen, people are considered adults. It is legal for them to fly planes, vote, marry, pay taxes, take out loans, smoke a cigarette and risk their lives in the armed forces. Yet, it is still illegal to drink. At sixteen, people are allowed to drive cars, which cause far more fatalities than alcohol. This in a whole, suggests that the drinking age should be lowered to eighteen. Many parents of today's teenagers were legally allowed to drink at eighteen. Today's teenagers face more responsibility and are treated more like adults than their parents were. This makes the twenty-one restriction seem out o... ... middle of paper ... ...ible. In order to get a drink, teenagers will carry fake I.D.s or sneak drinks from their parents' liquor cabinets. This kind of devious attitude does not encourage responsible drinking. Furthermore, when the opportunity to drink arises, there is a kind of "Let's be bad" attitude. The result is binge drinking. If the age were lowered to eighteen, this would reduce binge drinking and alcohol consumption would become less taboo. On one's eighteenth birthday, drinking will not be the only celebration, as it is at twenty-one. Prohibition laws are not working, they didn't work in the 1920's and they're not working now. Because the twenty-one year old drinking age law is not effective, and is counterproductive, it behooves us as a nation to change our current prohibition law and teach responsible drinking techniques for those who chose to consume alcoholic beverages.
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