ENG lit review

ENG lit review - Chase Werner 3/2/08 Making Sense of the...

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Chase Werner 3/2/08 Making Sense of the Legal Drinking Age Debate In the United States of America, by law a citizen must be 21 in order to purchase, consume, or possess alcoholic beverages. This law has been debated for decades in this country. There are a myriad of arguments for those that support lowering the required age to 21. There are just as many arguments for those who say that the age should remain where it is currently, at 21. Studies have been performed that attempt to prove what the proper age should be. Proponents have written journal articles from both sides of the debate. The subject of the drinking age needs to be studied because a decision needs to be reached that can be supported by the majority of Americans. If a the age is not lowered, then men and women who can fire a gun in the name of America, will continue to not be able to buy a drink. If the age should 21 because lowering it to 18 endangers lives then lowering it would have a negative effect on the general well being of Americans. A solution does need to be found. The very basic purpose of this literature review is to look at four articles written by academic scholars and researchers from both sides of the debate. The ultimate goal is to compare and synthesize the four different articles written about lowering the drinking age and its implications. In general, there were three issues that came up the most frequently in the articles. It is these three issues that will be compared in this review. This should help readers discover what has been learned about the drinking age so far and what research questions remain in regard to these four main issues. They are, in order of frequency, alcohol-related traffic accidents, reduction in consumption of alcohol, and rates of violence and crime committed by intoxicated people. When authors have positions that are either similar of different, I will discuss
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this. I will look at where the opposing sides have come to agreement, and where they are still engaged in debate. Let us start by summarizing the articles I reviewed. I will note which issues each respective article discusses. In these summaries I will not be stating what the authors’ viewpoints were on the issues, just whether they discussed them or not. The first article is titled “The Minimum Legal Drinking Age”. It was written by Traci L. Toomey. The journal in which the article was published was “Alcohol Health & Research World”. The issue was volume 20, issue four, and the year of publish was 1996. Toomey and Rosenfeld discuss four issues that come up in the drinking age debate. These three are discussed with at varying lengths; from just a brief mention, to multiple paragraphs. The first to be mentioned is the relation alcohol has to youth vandalism and crime. Secondly, is the correlation between traffic crashes and the legal drinking age. The effectiveness of the legal drinking age on reducing consumption is the third issue to be discussed. The fourth issue mentioned by the authors is the role that enforcement of the
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ENG lit review - Chase Werner 3/2/08 Making Sense of the...

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