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Should it be lowered - Essay Example

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The debate to lower the drinking age from 21 years to 18 years was started by a group of college presidents who signed a declaration claiming that the 21 year old drinking age was ineffective and should be abolished. The age was meant to reduce highway deaths caused by drunk…
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Download file to see previous pages During an interview by CBS News, John McCardell, former president of Middlebury College said that the drinking law was an abysmal failure in eliminating underage drinking, it drove the habit underground behind the scenes, into more risky and unmanageable settings. These settings included basements, fraternity houses and locked dormitories where minors hid from the law and adults. The law created a dangerous culture of irresponsible and reckless habits, unsupervised binge and excess drinking. For example, minors gulp bottles of beer in seconds trying to perfect the art of getting drunk quickly before they are discovered by adults (Johnson & Alex, 46). The irresponsible drinking behaviour endangers the lives of minors because they cannot access emergency medical care during their drinking sprees as they hide themselves. They also fear reporting alcohol related medical emergencies since it is breaking the law.
The drinking age should be lowered because the current law is unworkable, difficult to enforce and doesn’t stop minors from drinking. The enforcement of this law is routinely avoided and results in two or three arrests out of thousands of violations. The police aren’t in apposition to stop all cases of underage drinking, they can only contain it. The police department admitted that the law is ineffective. The police tried different techniques to curb drinking by minors but only few techniques succeeded (Toomey & Rosenfeld, 57). For example, they would find a party where minors were drinking and seal the house. They would write tickets to all the minors coming from the house and report them to their parents. All these efforts only pushed underage drinking underground instead of eliminating the habit. Pushing the drinking habit underground is endangers lives of the minors because encourages irresponsible drinking extremes and other antisocial behaviour such as drug abuse and crime.
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