Lowering The Drinking Age To 18

Appealing to Vermont's independent streak, the former president of Middlebury College says the state is an ideal place to try returning the legal drinking age to 18.

John McCardell, who also heads a national organization that supports the change, told lawmakers Thursday that a federal law withholding highway funding from states that don't abide by the 21-year-old minimum has stifled debate of a worthy idea.

But alcohol policy expert David Jernigan says dropping the age limit would simply lead to people drinking at a younger age.

Under the law, states that don't maintain the 21-year-old minimum risk losing 10 percent of their annual federal transportation funding.

Vermont Agency of Transportation spokesman John Zicconi says that would be about a $17.5 million loss in Vermont.


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  • by Eric Paine Location: Newport Beach on Mar 22, 2010 at 02:54 PM
    It's time for the nation to repeal these Prohibition-era laws and adopt a more intelligent, progressive, and educational approach to drinking among younger adults. These laws simply don't work, they aren't enforceable any longer, and if anything they are counterproductive. Literally millions of responsible young adults are already consuming alcohol and that's not going to change. What we need to do is stop wasting the taxpayers money chasing, charging and prosecuting responsible young adults who want to have a beer, and start putting the money where it ought to be, in promoting smart education about responsible drinking, and in pursuing far more serious criminals, including those at all ages who drive under the influence of alcohol and drugs. -- Eric Paine President & Founder Drink At 18 http://drinkat18.com
  • by MG Location: gville on Feb 1, 2010 at 03:20 PM
    America needs to get a grip! 18 should be the age limit and plus about DIU's , you should be a better parent and teach your kids how to drink and when not to drive. In all the other countries legal age is 18 i dont see them so alarmed by it. For an instance i grew up outside of the US and alcohol as long as you are with your parents its ok and my parents taught me how to drink...in moderation...so alcohol to me is not as attractive as some kids see it, im not the one with fake id and in downtown gville tryong to get as many drinks as posible.Its all about education. Abstenece is not the answer because apparently is not working for sex or alcohol...education is the answer.
  • by student Location: g-ville on Jan 26, 2010 at 11:41 AM
    I agree that nothing positive will really come out of legalizing it other than fewer drinking tickets and tax payer money going to enforcement etc.. On the other hand I agree that if you are old enough to go fight and die you are old enough to legally drink alcohol. Statistics probably wont change as underage cosumption is at an all time high and those who want to drink now find a way.
  • by Anonymous on Jan 24, 2010 at 09:39 PM
    I am a father and do not want my kids to do the same as I did. But I think the drinking age should be 18. And as far as making it 25, LOL. I know worse drunks that are over 45 than under 25.
  • by Nathan Location: Eastern NC on Jan 23, 2010 at 09:55 PM
    First, if you can fight and die for your country to make oilmen richer, surely you can have a beer after a hard day's work. Second, I used to work in a store in downtown Greenville. The under-21s send in the over-21s to buy beer for them. I'm not talking about a six-pack either, or even one case. I'm talking about the maximum number of cases you can legally buy. 9 cases, I think. Costs about $120. You think they card everyone? Quite the opposite, they're doing that to get around the age limit. Why not have everyone bring their own? Simple. Because most of them are too young to legally buy it. Fact. All that said, I'm opposed to lowering the age. Sure, kids are going to continue to drink illegally, but that doesn't mean it should be made legal. There is no benefit to lowering the legal drinking age and too many risks. In fact, far safer substances are illegal, might as well avoid hypocrisy and ban alcohol too. Or tax the safer yet still illegal ones and get us out of this recession.
  • by A Mother Location: NC on Jan 23, 2010 at 12:45 PM
    If you think DUI'S are bad now!!! 21 year old drink and drive to much as it is. But if you lower the age to those that are irresponsible (not all are) would have more DUI'S and accidents...not to mention the innocents that would be killed. Don't lower it!!!!
  • by John Location: Afghanistan on Jan 22, 2010 at 05:18 PM
    WHY NOT PEOPLE??? Kids do, whatever their parents let them get away with. In most cases... that means some are drinking by the ripe old age of 13-14. Not like alcoholics but at parties or in basements at their little social gatherings when someone's parents ain't around! You don't believe this or it's not your kid... you may want to think again. The point is it happens! Here is another News flash... have any of you been to a college dorm on a weekend??? Perhaps lowering the drinking age also lowers the alure of using alcohol as a way to Rebel. If this is SO HORRIBLE, how do other countries function with even lower or no drinking ages????? As for the needing to be 21 to vote and join the military.... NAH... if you are in the military that answer surprises me and as for the voting... Really??? do u think your typical 21yr old is any more politically savy than your average 18yr old? Why don't we wait until most folks really care, when it truly affects them? Oh that's right everyone is Dif!
  • by ECU Location: Gville on Jan 22, 2010 at 01:25 PM
    "Expert David Jernigan says dropping the age limit would simply lead to people drinking at a younger age." It took an expert for that? I can tell you that young kids already drink.
  • by kissy on Jan 22, 2010 at 12:19 PM
    Shouldn't be allowed to vote until 21. Shouldn't be in the military until you are 21.
  • by udontknow Location: USA on Jan 22, 2010 at 11:47 AM
    In that case,just legalize Marijuana to people over the age of 21.
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