Should the legal age allowing consumption of alcohol be raised?
Legal drinking age refers to the youngest age at which a person is legally permitted to buy alcoholic beverages. It is often different from the age at which one is permitted to drink alcohol. There are often exceptions and complications within the general law. In some countries, the drinking age is different for public drinking (as in bars and pubs) and private drinking (as in the home). The legal drinking age can be different for different types of alcoholic beverages.
The legal drinking age varies around the world. In Europe, people in some countries are allowed to drink alcoholic beverages from childhood within their home (in Albania, for example, there is no minimum age). In India, the legal age may be as high as 25 years. Some Islamic nations prohibit Muslims, or both Muslims and non-Muslims, from drinking alcohol at any age.
I think raising the drinking age to 21 will reduce consumption amongst young people because it will be harder to buy alcohol. Also, young people are the most likely group to misuse alcohol; e.g. drinking to excess, which causes accidents, death and health problems. If people start drinking later in life, they may be more likely to drink in moderation and not get addicted at an early age.
However, it will still be possible for young people to drink at home. People will find ways to avoid the legislation e.g. asking older people to buy for them. Nevertheless, it will be more difficult. For example, a 16 year old may not be able to get away with drinking in a pub anymore.
This policy doesn’t address the underlying problem of why people want to drink to excess. For that education may be a better solution; education could help to explain the dangers of excess drinking and therefore encourage young people to drink moderation.. However, previous education policies have not seemed to be very effective. Young people don’t want to hear lectures from the government about the dangers of alcohol.
What do you think?
Last edited by Hysteria; 04-16-2011 at 07:49 AM.