Drinking age paper - Youmans 1 Roger Youmans Jr. English...

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Youmans 1 Roger Youmans Jr. English Research Paper Professor Malinowski The Drinking Age Life in general is filled with many changes as well as experiences. Everyone is told what is good and bad in life growing up for the most part by someone, whether that is a teacher, parent, a friend or anyone else. One of those things that most people get told while growing up is underage drinking is bad. Underage drinking is a big issue that effects teenager’s nation wide. The current drinking age in the United States is twenty one years old. The Federal government rose the legal drinking age from 18 to 21 in 1984. Even with the current drinking age at twenty one, many people under the age choose to drink anyways though. In fact, a government survey from 1996 showed that 56% of high school seniors reported drinking in the last 30 days (Hanson). From my experience in high school this number has most likely increased now. With so many underage drinkers, many people believe that the drinking age should be lowered. There are many reasons of why people believe this. Ruth C. Engs states some of the reasons, the first being, that minors still drink, so the drinking laws clearly don’t work. A second reason given is that lowering the drinking age will encourage young people to be responsible consumers. A third reason is that lowering
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Youmans 2 the drinking age will reduce the temptation of alcohol for minors. The fourth reason Engs stated was that at 18 years old, people can vote, join the military, sign contracts, smoke and even gamble but why shouldn’t they be able to drink? Still other people 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 put into action. One approach that many people take when talking about why the drinking age should be lowered is that the law against drinking under twenty one doesn’t work. Many people taking this approach believe in some way or other that the laws today do little or anything to help or stop underage drinking, and meanwhile do the opposite by making underage drinking a worse issue. “At the very least, American youth alcohol policy is ineffective. More disturbing, the drinking age may be counterproductive. It is applied so rigidly in most of the country that it precludes any attempt to teach young people how to handle alcohol responsibly” (Hanson). Matthew Pickerington stated that “Many people feel that the lack of effective policies and the high rate of underage drinking could have been predicted.” Pickerington then went on to say “In the 1920’s and 30’s, the United States attempted a prohibition of all alcohol beverages. This was met with such hostility
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This note was uploaded on 04/17/2008 for the course BIO 121 taught by Professor Short during the Fall '07 term at Finger Lakes Community College.

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Drinking age paper - Youmans 1 Roger Youmans Jr. English...

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