Lower the Drinking age in U.S.?

Running Wolf

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Lol...
I don't think that there are a lot of kids who drink every day.
But I have to admit for us, it's normal to go to a party every weekend and drink a bit. Classmates of mine get really drunk every weekend, so that they don't remember too much of the night. And they are still normal people and not too dumb.
Cause we are supposed to be one of the best schools of the state, and those guys have top grades. I can't see no damage in their brains =)

Simply btw: I was drunk yesterday. I'm not especially proud of it, but it's nothing that should be taken too seriously. It's fun, no more. I know my limits and I do stop when I know that I shouldn't keep on drinking.
 

Alchemist

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Blackness,

I am not saying that they will not drink either way, you are completely right on that, they will do it regardless if they want to. I said earlier that lowering to 18 would be fine. I just wanted to bring out more of the dangers. I actually know someone, well went to high school with, who got drunk once when they were 15 and had to be taken from public school to a "special" school because his brain just shut down and he never recovered.

As most things in life, it depends on the individual.
Alot of problems would be solved if parents would actually sit down and discuss these things with their kids.

As for me, I was drunk once in my life and that was just a couple of years ago, hated that wobbly weak leg feeling, never got drunk since and dont plan on it...I like to drink, just stop at the buzz. I even waited till I was 21 to drink at all...never was interested before.
 
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Running Wolf

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@Alchemist: I agree on that. But I know a girl who got drunk really bad when she was 13 (1 or 2 bottles of wodka) and she puked the whole night. She never did that again. Now she stops when she knows, that she went too far.
 

Crusader

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Oh, and Cru, you will get them buddy, everyone gets a 'hangover-free' period when they're young. ;)

I have a complex biological functioning. If I drink, no matter how badly, the next day i'll be tired and a little groggy, but no headaches. If I drink 2 days running my stomach tries to euthanise me.

Needless to say I dont drink 2 days running.


anyway back to the matter at hand:

I'll state my overarching point once again. NO, I don't think teenagers should be encouraged to "test their limits". If you're legal, you can do what you want in your life. I'm not here to argue over what should be the legal age, but I think that you SHOULDN'T be allowed to drink if you aren't of legal age yet. I've proved that adults are generally better at making decisions than teenagers. IF minors were allowed to know themselves by watching pornography and doing drugs, IF parents were given less control, chaos will arise.

This is a pretty gigantic post and I'm zonked out so night, everyone.


Sorry to cut out the rest but this last point was the crux i thought needed addressing more, shout at me if you want me to go through the rest.

Here we come back to the legal age, and here the legal age is 18, in america the legal age is 21, focusing on the LEGAL age is irrelevant, because it depends on culture, maturity etc, who is to say who has it right? Parents still have control here with 18.

i think this whole thing has to go back to the basic ideal of maturity and adulthood and where you draw the line.

And to go back and cover the points, jnanee your idea of maturity as not playing with fire, I respect that but let me ask you this, does that attitude change in between 18 and 21? did you gain that at 21 or long before, if thats how you define maturity then what age would you apply to that since you obviously have that attitude now I'll need to ask when you developed it.

besides that our differences of opinion on maturity are just that, frankly I think you need a frame of reference to consider yourself mature on such subject matter, your stance for me is just playing it safe and while it is a wise choice, for me its a little too extreme to be mature, to put it like this youre abstaining due to fear not experience. that doesnt of course mean you opinion is any less important than someone who has, or that its wrong. Thats just my opinion anyway.



Also you can shoot me for this because i cant reference it but i heard somewhere that alcohol doesnt actuall kill brain cells.

I got it off QI and i dare anyone not to believe something steven fry says, he said it was based on a study analyzing the brains of heavy drinkers anyway.



as for LoS, tell me, do you think 3 years earlier will make college students drink any more? i'm inclined to agree with unraveller basen on my experience, experimentation will inevitable lead to boredom unless youre prone to addiction, in a sense it just means tha wise up 3 ears earlier.
 

Running Wolf

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I totally agree with crusader.

The age doesn't make anyone mature, it's the experience they have. If you don't give kids a chance to gain their own experience, then how can they ever be mature enough to do the "right" stuff?

Between 18 and 21 there is not a lot difference. Of course you lose three valuable years of you life, but no more than that. So if you are legal to drink with 18, I'd say you won't be seriously involved with it anymore once you're 21. Same argument holds for everything: The earlier you do it, the sooner you learn. But again, there are border that are not to cross. I'm perfectly fine with the drinking age in my country (16), but I agree that it shouldn't be lowered a single inch! 16 is early enough. Adn I don't know anybody in my region who plays with alcohol like a kid with fire. Because most of them "burned" themselves once, so they know that the "fire is hot". (i hope you get what I wanna say...)

Another point that transforms drinking (in the US) into a danger for all, is that kids are allowed to drive by the age of 16. Driving: 16, Drinking: 21
The first time they're really filled up with alc, they might not even know it, cause they have not developed any sense for it. If they wanna get home (and that's usually by car) they need to drive. Et voila, a drunk driver on the streets.
Germany: driving: 18, drinking: 16.
By the age of 18, everyone knows that drinking and driving is not a good idea, because drinking and walking is hard enough. So it's not only the law that stops people from driving, it's own experience. Usually we have sleepovers after a party
=> Nobody gets hurt and all can clean up together in the Morning :D

My point is: You don't suddenly grow up when the law says "do so!"
It's a process that needs experience to progress. So lowering the drinking age is again a question of trust, morals and acceptance of society.
America is complicated. One can't talk about one subject without reaching another one. So lowering the drinking age at this point in time would not be a good idea (even though i'm generally for it). First society needs to change, then the laws. or both at the same time.
 

Turambar

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Running_Wolf said:
My point is: You don't suddenly grow up when the law says "do so!"
It's a process that needs experience to progress. So lowering the drinking age is again a question of trust, morals and acceptance of society.
America is complicated. One can't talk about one subject without reaching another one. So lowering the drinking age at this point in time would not be a good idea (even though i'm generally for it). First society needs to change, then the laws. or both at the same time.
A couple of posts back, I not so much pleaded to see the drinking age reduced, I merely argued that, from a philosophical point of view, there is very little you can deny of a person that age. Now, I do agree that laws are rather rigid; it's either allowed or illegal, good or bad, one or zero. But, as it seems, 18 is the age when we declare a person "responsible". And if that is the case, then the the responsibility of drinking, much as all the other ones, should rest with the ones responsible. And not with the law, who denies it for another three years. After all, it is the law that determins both.

Now, I am Dutch, so I would agree that some compromise could be possible (we love those, overhere). I could imagine that the formal responisbility rests with the parent up to the legal drinking age. But that is a very obscure legal matter...
 

Unraveller

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In Ireland 18 is only the legal age to be sold alcohol (as far as I am aware), it's legal to drink from age 14 if it's bought for you (I think only your parents can give it to you if you're under 16). The idea is to encourage responsible drinking in the home. Do any of you know of similar laws in your countries?
 

Turambar

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Well, I think the laws in the Netherlands can only prohibit alcohol sales to persons under 16 for non-distilled and under 18 for distilled alcohol products. I think it's neither allowed for minors to drink in public space, but far as I can recollect, this too is under penalty of the purchaser of the alcohol. Due to this situation, it's left to the judgment of the adults to give alcohol to minors in their discretion. The other thing that is prohibited is commercial appraisal of drinking (alchohol) and related products for and/or to minors... for obvious reasons.

It deserves to note that the general tendancy among parents is not to be too cautious...
 

Crusader

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In Ireland 18 is only the legal age to be sold alcohol (as far as I am aware), it's legal to drink from age 14 if it's bought for you (I think only your parents can give it to you if you're under 16). The idea is to encourage responsible drinking in the home. Do any of you know of similar laws in your countries?

Yeah I'm ot sure how different the laws are across the Uk ut i know england is 18 for everything, 16 bought for or with a meal or something, and below that from 5 up parents can allow alcohol (but excess is obviouslly criminal under child abuse or neglect laws).

work fine for me, i've had wine with family, celebrated with champagne, and when i was old enough had some pints down the pub, no harm done. I'm responsible somewhat in that I will only rarely decide to destroy myself with alcohol and then its always predetermined and done in moderation (as in, dont drink again for at least two weeks and dont binge again for more than twice that).

Its funny this discussion was actually raised, I was having similar one the other weekwith a friend of mine, we were at a house party. Ironically I was also very drink at the time, but i was discussing the idea of maturity through experience involving alcohol.

its funny that in my experience when people are drunk they go on to philosophy and in depth discussions, sober convsersations tend to be more 'I was so drunk the other day'
 

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