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Old Enough Ene Echono DeVry University English 112 Professor Tschetter April 21 2011

As history has proven. 1997-2011.) The United States of America should lower its legal age of alcohol consumption back to that of the age of majority and create new ways of monitoring alcohol purchases and consumption. the teenager goes . Tactics like this achieve nothing. using mouthwash on school property. Alcohol abuse). choose the country‟s leaders and rear a child but they are not mature enough to consume alcohol (“Changing Age. go for jury duty and vote. His offense. The problem most officials and committees have is not the age of the drinker. take a life. 1997-2011. This means that said 18 year old is mature enough to hold a gun. have sex. this is one of numerous instances where adults take the law and 0 tolerance policy too far. Other countries like the United Kingdom and Canada do not have the high alcohol related problems and deaths that are prominent in America and yet their legal ages are set much lower than America (Hanson. which is why trying to prohibit adolescents from drinking is backfiring so radically. prohibition does not work. They can also sign legally binding 2 contracts. Minimum Age). an American can go to war. it‟s the amount and what they did afterwards.” 1974.OLD ENOUGH Old Enough At the age of 18 in the 21st century. and decide on another human‟s guilt. watch their comrades‟ fall. have a baby. Yet they cannot walk into a bar and order a drink. The United States is one of three countries in the world with the drinking age set at 21. A high school senior was suspended for ten days for violating the schools alcohol policy (Hanson.

They haven‟t reduced the amount of alcohol-related deaths they have just reduced the ones that happens on roads. In the fall of 2008. for example “research also shows that many adolescents start to drink at very young ages. and alcohol poisoning. Those „troubling‟ facts do not seem so drastic now. The statistics are incomplete and therefore skewed to incur an unneeded fear that makes people too scared to ask questions. 2011. but any parent or school administrative reading that would have an irrational reaction that could cause the child to make an irrational decision. but 3.) Those facts are true but what the article doesn‟t inform the reader is that in 1965 the drinking age was not set as high as 21 yet. Their belief was that the drinking . the average age of first use of alcohol was about 14.900 of them are motor vehicle related. Only 1.000 plus Americans under the age of 21 are still dying every year of alcohol-related causes other than driving including homicide. That happened in 1984 with the drinking age act. underage college students were cheering and the chiefs of police were undecided. compared to about 17 1/2 in 1965. Raising the drinking age to 21 has reduced the amount of highway fatalities by 13-15 percent. (Maisto. Each year an average of 5000 alcohol related death still occur as a result of underage drinking.OLD ENOUGH home feeling unjustly punished.) Well you can imagine the uproar that ensued. the parents complain and it turns into an incredibly unproductive spectacle. 100 plus college presidents signed a declaration stating that the legal drinking age of 21 years is not working. Mothers Against Drunk Driving were livid. suicide. Even the National institute on Alcohol Abuse 3 and Alcoholism Alcohol alert article is misguiding. 2006.” (Alcohol Alert. In 2003.

Pre-teens see high school/college themed movies like “College” or TV shows like “Gossip Girl” even songs like Asher Roth‟s “I love college” and assume that is an accurate description. it is based on experience and knowledge. Maturity level is not something that can be gauged just by age. The freedom that comes from the first year of college is invigorating. There is proof that teenagers do follow some rules. It is like deciding . The reason teens and young adults do not take the drinking age seriously is because it makes no logical sense to them. The policies and laws dedicated to alcohol consumption do not treat drinking the way they do driving and other laws concerning young people. Because of that something as coveted and recreational as alcohol cannot be set by age. so therefore the young people do not as well. they are smart enough to wait until the appropriate age to get their permit. they are fairly upstanding citizens in other regards. take the lessons and pass the test before they get on the road. there is a low percentage of 1416 year olds caught driving. Parents and schools are make it worse by having alcohol abstinent conversations and calling it alcohol awareness instead 4 of acknowledging the fact that they will experiment with alcohol and giving them proper information and options according to that fact. these things are not always acquired with age. If they really want to make consuming alcohol more police-able they would enforce a stricter policy on how alcohol can be purchased and therefore how much of it is consumed instead of just putting an age cap on it and leaving it to individual towns/counties to figure out. there is a special type of rush that comes with it.OLD ENOUGH age act has in no way improved upon the numerous alcohol problems found on a college campus.

S it is about a good 90 percent. where every other decision after it would be incongruent to it. drinks with the boss.OLD ENOUGH to have sex. men drink scotch and women drink wine. Dr. and yet they are allowed to purchase and consume liquor freely (Spielberger. Hanson states “Parents have great influence over the choices their . There are questions one has to ask themselves before undertaking such a task. drinks at a dinner party. 2006). Some examples would be: is it safe for me to do this right now? Or what is my reason behind this decision? Also are those reasons for me or for someone else? And most importantly how 5 far am I willing to go with this? Unfortunately there are 25-40 year olds out there who are unaware of the common sense that are these questions. in the U. Everyone has probably consumed alcohol at some point in their lives. the list goes on. only 30 percent of them are regular drinkers with half of that percent being alcohol dependant (Spielberger. happy hour. Adults in their thirties have drinks during meetings. And in their forties. 2006). Young adults in their twenties have drinks after work. Drinking has become a part of an average adult‟s daily life. Then they turn around and tell those same kids that drinking is bad and they should stay away from it as much as possible as long as possible. Those are usually the kind of adults that will go and willingly purchase alcohol for a minor. a bottle of wine or two after the kids are down for the night just to „relax”. those are also the kind of adults that would later ditch the party instead of taking responsibility and getting people help or home safely. drinks to close a deal. After a certain age the motto “Do what I say and not what I do” is unrealistic and undermines the adults authority. David J. drinks on the weekend and so on and so forth.

OLD ENOUGH children make about alcohol now and in the future. it is to make it easier to police the law and reduce the amount of hidden binge drinking. they are still impacting their children. Would you prefer that your child call someone and requested a ride home instead of driving drunk for fear of reprimand? Take out that fear and you will be surprised the response you get. “I will drink tonight. and a test.” The official proposal is that with the lowering of the legal age limit there should also be mandatory alcohol awareness classes. in high schools and on roads. For example. but I will set a limit and stick to it. the drinking age act of 1984. . The point is to explain to kids and adolescents that consuming alcoholic beverages is not just a right of passage. the point being that the last suggestion. By adding new ways of monitoring and teaching alcohol consumption it is to make it understandable to them that the consumption of alcohol is not something to take lightly. By proposing that the legal age of consumption be lowered. needs to be improved on now. it is exhibiting the right to be an adult and perpetrate appropriate behavior and decisions. the intention is not to make it easier for kids to get drunk.” (2006) Parents do not realize that whether they have a realistic conversation about alcohol or a hypocritical one that contradicts their words with their actions. 2006. Evidently it is not working on campuses. reducing the amount of drinkers in high school. (Venturelli. This is a workable suggestion that can be improved on as time goes on.) When taken and passed a license will be administered that can monitor the amount of alcohol bought 6 on a monthly bases making it easier to police the amount of alcohol consumed. For those 18 year olds in high school they would need parental consent before they are allowed to take the test.

In the United States 2. Age of Majority 1. Age of Consumption 1. In other countries II. Common Place 1.OLD ENOUGH Outline 7 Thesis: The United states of America should lower its legal age of alcohol consumption back to that of the age of majority and create new ways of monitoring alcohol purchases and consumption. Sex & War 2. In other countries B. Drinking for the ages 2. Maturity Drinking A. Alcohol A. . I.

gov/ERICWebPortal/search/detailmini. Venturelli. Minimum Legal Drinking Ages around the World.OLD ENOUGH References 8 Hanson. Hanson.. A. J. C. (1st ed. Retrieved form http://www. Alcohol A.niaaa. G.jsp?_nfpb=true&_&ER ICExtSearch_SearchValue_0=ED099996&ERICExtSearch_SearchType_0=no&a ccno=ED099996 National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (2006). Alcohol Alert.potsdam.html Maisto S. . Connors G.. D.nih. Boston: Elsevier Academic Press. (2006) Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology. Alcohol Problems and Solutions. A Legal Memorandum. D. (2006). Retrieved from http://pubs.ed. (1997-2011).gov/publications/aa67/aa67.J. Underage Drinking.. Retrieved from http://www2.J. Retrieved from http://www2. Alcohol Problems and Solutions.eric.) Oxford. Galizio M. (2011). (1997-2011). Drug use and Abuse.html Spielberger. (6th ed.html Hanson.) Wadsworth National Association of Secondary Principals (1974).. & Fleckenstein.E. Drugs and Society..J. P.D..potsdam. The Changing Age of Majority.