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Drinking Laws This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

     A strong belief of mine is that the drinking age should be increased. I don’t believe that at 21 most people are either mature enough or responsible enough to handle drinking. Alcohol is one of the most commonly abused drugs. The solution is simple, and I don’t see why it should not be done.

It’s common for minors to have friends who are the legal drinking age. I see people come into the store where I work who are clearly buying alcohol for minors. Teens will wait outside while the 21-year-old buys the alcohol. This frustrates me no end.

It has been proved that the brain doesn’t stop growing until the age of about 23. Yes, 23 is definitely not a large gap, but it is very significant. Most people at 23 have graduated from college and are ready to start their lives. On the other hand, many 21-year-olds are still in college, enjoying parties and the alcohol that comes with them. College is a time when many experience peer pressure to party and have fun with friends, which is where the danger emerges. If we could increase the drinking age by even a few years, we could save thousands of lives.

Automobile accidents are often a result of alcohol. The news is always reporting an accident because of a drunk driver who missed a stop sign or couldn’t stay in his lane. And it’s not always the drunk driver who gets hurt or killed. Since alcohol depresses the body, it makes drinkers more relaxed and loose. Consequently, they usually walk away from these accidents unscathed. One bad mistake, one bad judgment can cause many families endless trauma. The guilt the driver eventually feels often lasts the rest of his life. No one should have to live with that, or the knowledge that a loved one was taken away because someone decided to drink and drive.

In my life, I’ve witnessed a lot of things that I wish I hadn’t and I’ve seen many things I wish I could forget. My oldest sister used to hang out with people who would get drugs from the street and have others buy alcohol so they could party. Looking back, I can see where she made her biggest mistake since what she did when she was younger screwed up the rest of her life. Her personality has changed a lot, and I don’t think it will ever be normal again, even with help.

I hate hearing about how someone drank at a party and drove home slowly and carefully, and everything turned out okay. They were lucky, but do you honestly want to take that chance? I don’t know anyone who would willingly gamble with their life just to enjoy a night of drinking. The risk is just too high.

I’m not saying we should ban alcohol, but I believe that it should be more closely monitored and controlled. There are lots of other ways to have fun with your friends that don’t involve drinking. Alcohol is a drug. It always was and it always will be. I believe we should take that into account and make some changes to the laws.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 73 comments. Post your own now!

Stuber said...
Jul. 16, 2011 at 5:26 pm

i disagree i think since ur a legal adult at 18, and can join the military at 18, you can make ur own decisions. so if u wnna drink u should be able to drink and face the consequences


AshleySD replied...
May 18 at 10:11 am
First of all, it took me forever to read this because of all your abbreviations. I have autism. Second, it's not just the drinker who faces consequences. If that person drives drunk and kills someone, that person's family and friends will have to face the consequences of the drunk driver's actions. People don't get grounded as adults. The consequences range far beyond a given punishment. Even without a court-ordered punishment, the guilt of what they did will likely destroy them inside.
JustTazzy said...
Jun. 29, 2011 at 9:42 pm
raising it won't help people abusing it, or drunk d4rivers. America already has one of the highest drinking ages, and that probably contributed to people drinking way too much. If it wasn't treated as such a big deal, young adults probably would not drink as much. It is society, not the drink age, which really needs to be lowered. By the way, I don't really think anyone needs to drink, but that has been tried and failed, so we need to learn to lie with it.
lovetowrite22 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Apr. 2, 2011 at 6:14 pm
I completely agree. rarely are there mature 21 year olds.
A+student said...
Mar. 15, 2011 at 5:34 pm
I think alcohol should be banned out of this country! It is a horrible creation!!! Well you did an excillent job at writting this artical.
FULLFORCE replied...
Jun. 24, 2011 at 5:42 pm
I cant beleive anyone would over -use this product. It completely destroys your liver!
ChickenLegHouse replied...
Nov. 29, 2012 at 8:27 am
Have you ever had tiramisu? That has rum in it and nobodys ever going to get drunk off of it. So should that be banded too? 
AshleySD replied...
May 18 at 10:13 am
I actually agree with you and wish that alcohol could just be completely removed from the country. However this already happened. You're probably familiar with Amendment 18 banning alcohol. It resulted in bootlegging, speakeasies, and a huge increase in crime and mafia activity. That's why they decided on adding Amendment 21 which repealed 18.
mr h said...
Mar. 15, 2011 at 9:19 am

this story goes both ways with kids and people can think what ever they what because its everyones opinoin


MasterZone said...
Feb. 17, 2011 at 4:32 am

  My thought is, if you want to drink under-age legally, go to Canada and come back drunk. It's legal, you can do it, and the police can't stop you. All you have to be is 18 years of age. :)


butterflylover said...
Jan. 12, 2011 at 8:59 pm

mm i believe you are totally wrong.

maybe you should read my article and why drinking should be lowered.

its called drinking and driving laws.

AshleySD replied...
May 18 at 10:16 am
You're both partially right. Neither of you are totally wrong. But please be respectful to Lianne. She put a lot of hard work into her article and posted it, despite the risk of critism.
black-sapphire said...
Dec. 26, 2010 at 2:55 pm
kids rebel...if we would raise the legal drinking age then i think more people would just go against it...i mean, i hardly know any kids who follow the law that you have to be 21 and im only 14 years old, so if the legal age got raised to 23 i think more people would rebel against it...but i dont know..different people mature at different ages, and in the end--its their choice on whether they are going to drink or not..
jimmydane34 said...
Dec. 13, 2010 at 11:12 pm

i argued enough about the alcohol issue. all im going to say is no matter what age you put it. everyone is going to still drink regardless. may be HARDER to get it but teenagers will always find a way.

life is dangerous, its about the freedom of choice, some people get unlucky become the victom and some arent.

i do feel remorce in people becomming the victom of dieing due to drunken drivers.


but leave your sad story out of it.

its about the whole coun... (more »)

AshleySD replied...
May 18 at 12:01 pm
You make some good points, but I had a hard time reading this because of my autism. Please do more research before trying to prove someone wrong because a lot of your points are incorrect.
DawnMarie said...
Dec. 13, 2010 at 10:22 am

Increasing the drinking age will only cause anger throughout the country, and more rebellion. More rebellion = you guessed it, more underage drinking. 

I believe that you should be able to drink from a young age, like 8 or 9. This might sound crazy, but children in Italy have a small glass of wine a couple times a week with their dinner. 

If we had that in the US, then people wouldn't feel the need to rebel and drink alcohol when they aren't suppose... (more »)

Sis94 replied...
Dec. 13, 2010 at 4:53 pm

You are right. people think that drugs and drinking will help them in life well its not  and i cant say i have not had a beer my self but  don't go out and do stupis things


elusiveroyalty said...
Oct. 30, 2010 at 2:26 pm
This is a good idea, but it would never actually work.  I am a teenager and, let's face it, teenagers drink and teenagers drive and teenagers do all kinds of horribly stupid things, and creating a law saying they can't do them doesn't help.  I even know some people who like doing illegal things better because it gives them a thrill.  We can sit around and think up all these gloriously simple, ideal situations, but it doesn't play out that way in the real world.
AaronLawrence said...
Oct. 27, 2010 at 11:29 am
I totally agree with you, but just to throw some things out there, a good portion of teens (and adults) drink because alcohal is a good icebreaker at parties.  Also, when you look at countries like ireland and england, wherer they have a lower drinking age, drinking problems in general are catastrophic.  Good work anyway. 
Rosey_Angel said...
Oct. 23, 2010 at 8:59 pm

I disagree, if the government trusts you to judge whether or not you're ready to give your life for this country, then why don't they trust you to drink?


AshleySD replied...
May 18 at 12:03 pm
They don't trust young people to drink because of all the catastrophes that happen when people do.
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