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Drinking Age Change

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The changing of the legal drinking age from 18 to 21 resulted from the false politicization of the very serious and prevalent issue of teenage drunk driving by activist groups such as M.A.D.D.-Mothers Against Drunk Driving. Instead of trying to legislate morality, which is a lost cause, the focus should be put on attempting to create a society which breeds responsible drinking habits. Since there is no significant change developmentally from the age 18 to 21, those three years are, in essence, a state of unfounded prohibition. The drinking age should be changed to 18. One reasoning behind the upping of the age, was the fact that the brain is not yet fully developed at the age of 18, and this can result in not only lapses of judgement (i.e., binge drinking, drunk driving, etc.) but also in alcohol related health issues. However, the prefrontal cortex of one’s brain (which is involved in decision making and executive function) is not fully shaped until late 20’s. Following that line of…show more content…
As a country, we need to redefine the culture surrounding alcohol so that we can create a society which breeds knowledge and understanding about alcohol. People are going to drink and get drunk no matter what the legal age is. Our only hope as a society is to address what it means to us to have “socially responsible drinking.” The next task is to figure out how to teach it. By generating informed citizens and exposing them to this knowledge at an early age, we can aim to demystify the term “drinking responsibly.” Adolescents learn based on experience. The developmental stage of an 18 and a 21 year old is basically the same. Changing the legal drinking age back to 18, would only help to take away the taboo surrounding drinking and promote drinking safety and
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