Over the last twenty-two years, there have been more than 130,000 fatal teen crashes. Though these teenagers are legal, trained drivers, what is a solution to reduce the number of lives lost due to these lethal car crashes? Scientists believe that the solution to reducing the amount of deaths would be to raise the driving age and enforce stricter driving laws. Parents, however, are against raising the driving age as they would have to drive their teenager to the movies for a longer period of time. Thus, the driving age should be raised to twenty due to the maturity of people’s brains and understanding of consequences rather than depending on emotions and desires.
I wanted to speak about an issue that affects me, and being that I’m a teenager, it does. My proposal for this issue is to change the drinking age to 18 but if this is too arduous to make that leap to 18, at least make it 19 or 20. I think 21 is too long of a gap to make it legal when most teenagers are already exposed to it. Teenagers deal with a lot of stress, whether they are in college or working, they need a stress reliever. Drinking helps them get out of this stress zone and allows them to have a good time.
I believe that by increasing the driving age teens would have more time to learn how to drive. However, there are many who oppose for raising the driving age to eighteen. One argument on this is that it would not be fair to teenagers who could have been able to drive, but due to raising the age of driving they have to rely on parents or other family member to go anywhere. Another reason they argue with this is, at the age of eighteen teenagers are ready to move foe college or job. So, if they got license before then parents do not have to worry about their kids.
This makes it easier for parents who start work early and families that don't live close to a school. In addition, the main reason that many people are against driving at 16 is because 16-17 year olds are the age group with the most accidents. However, what they don't know, is that the reason behind these accidents is inexperience. If the driving age were indeed raised, there would be just as many accidents. This is because 18 year olds would be inexperienced as well.
Drunk driving accidents are all too common in California, and throughout the U.S. The California Highway Patrol reported that there were more than 1,000 fatal accidents, and more than 16,000 injury collisions, involving alcohol consumption in 2013 alone. Such crashes occur despite most people understanding the dangers of driving under the influence. This is because drunk drivers often think that they have not had too much to drive safely, or they incorrectly believe they are better drivers after having a couple of drinks. According to a recent study, however, any amount of alcohol consumption is dangerous for drivers.
But while it has succeeded in that, it is also believed that tougher rules, such as DUI rules and seatbelt safety rules have also played a part in this decrease. However, this higher drinking age hasn’t reduced drinking, its only “driven it underground,” Gabrielle Glaser states in her NY Times article. It has been driven underground to the riskiest settings, high school parties and frat parties that are unsupervised. This age raise segregates the drinking away from adults that can model moderation in drinking. If an 18-year-old high school senior is shown by his/her parent(s) how to drink responsibly and in moderation, I believe that it would greatly help in reducing the chance of making bad decisions by overdoing it, such as driving while drinking.
Binge drinking involves drinking at a very fast rate in order to get drunk which clearly can be incredibly dangerous, especially for inexperienced drinkers. Carleton relies on personal responsibility heavily but also provides many regulations meant to keep students safe. It has also been shown that alcohol is a leading cause of sexual assaults on college campuses. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, “researchers consistently have found that approximately one-half of all sexual assaults are committed by men who have been drinking alcohol” and “approximately one-half of all sexual assault victims report that they were drinking alcohol at the time of the assault.” Alcohol and sexual assault are clearly connected so having an open policy can also lead to an increase in sexual assault cases on campus. Once again Carleton is putting students in danger by letting them drinking without any kind of punishment.
So help keep drunk drivers off the roads. In the essay “Drunk Driving-the dangers” the author stated, “Alcohol-related accidents are so prevalent, an estimated 40 percent of all persons in the United States will be involved in a traffic mishap blamed on alcohol at some point in their lives.” If you are a drunk driver you should be driving a vehicle.
It is believed by them that this would only ruin their productivity and negatively affect their lives. However, most places allow teenagers to drive past curfew if their commute is school, emergency, religious, or work related. Other than these, there is no reason for teenagers to be out on the roads late at night. A curfew allows for young people to be much safer from the dangers produced by the night. Teenagers are not prepared for what may lie ahead and need to kept safe as they are the future.
For starters, studies show an increase of dangerous drinking habits among young adults (Hall 2). In addition, the enforcement of the drinking laws and education on alcohol is insubstantial (Moyse, Fonder 3). Society places laws to protect individuals. The rise of alcohol abuse raises the question if the minimum legal drinking age of 21 secures protection of the people. With proper enforcement of drinking laws in addition to education about alcohol, the minimum legal drinking age of 18 provides a safer drinking culture.