Legal drinking age? Okay or not?

Okay so for the record, I don't drink at all. I may drink a little wine, but I hate the taste of beer and would rather not drink it. So this isn't a question coming from a pissy 18 y/o who just wants to legally drink ASAP. I'm just curious as to why the hell the drinking age is 21. I mean, we already have teenagers drinking at around 16, and you can smoke at 18, so why can't you drink at, say, 19? I guess its because the law expects a 21 y/o to be mentally smart enough to not get drunk and do stupid shit but that's a load of shit if thats the legit reason. Also, if you can join the military, carry a gun, and are expected to be able to blow a mfs head off with no problem at 18, why the hell can't you drink at that age as well? I'm not saying, "lets wipe the whole thing." cause then we'll have 14 y/os trying to drink, and I know some guys who are fine with that, but I'm saying, lets at least allow those who've graduated high school the ability to buy it and drink it, cause we all have the one idiot who'll come to school drunk and that's just annoying right there.


Most Helpful Guy

  • This is a bedmate that has gone on for some time. The old reasoning for 18 was "old enough to go war, you should be old enough to drink." And I get that. But honestly I think it'd be more practical to heighten the minimum age for military service than drinking age. Sometimes I think of 18 year old kids, and how they could be out blowing heads off and having their own heads blown off somewhere on the other side of the world, and that just blows my mind. To me, that's just too young, especially making the initial decision to even join the armed forces. That seems like more of a 21 year old decision to me. It's easy to whip up patriotism and nationalism in some kid barely out of high school. That's such a dangerous age for decision making. You're so stoked to be an adult, you think you have the world all figured out, but you're blind to the fact that you still don't know your ass from your elbow.

    So that said, back to drinking. I think the "showing up drunk to school" point you made has always been a factor. It's like when you turn 18 and can legally sign yourself out of school... some people just go haywire with it. I think with alcohol you're also trying to limit minors' access to it, and you have to consider that an 18 year old still probably has friends who are 17, 16, maybe 15, and now THOSE kids can easily obtain it. A 21 year old likely doesn't hang out with people under 18, so in a way, the access is somewhat the same for an 18 year old, yet it's indirect. I think they're accounting for something of a buffer zone in that regard. 18-20 is really like adulthood with training wheels, haha, so maybe it's smart to at least TRY to limit access, because some people can't manage newfound freedom right away.

    • Bedmate=debatešŸ˜‚

    • I couldn't agree with you more.

      Just gonna say you wanna limit the 18 y/os friends access by limiting the 18 y/o themselves? That's stupid. Let them buy their idiot friends beer and punish their stupid asses directly, not the entire population with more sense.

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What Girls Said 6

  • I never understood why the drinking age in the US is 21. Is it because people are generally more conservative down there? If people want to drink, they're not going to wait that long. Where I live, it's 19 and in some other parts of the country it's 18.

    • True but making the legal age 21 makes it a lot harder for people under 21 to drink.

      You can take any average 18-20 year old and 21 year old and over drinker here in the United States and the 21 year old and over person will drink FAR more frequent than the 18-20 year old.

      I still think it should be 18, since it's the legal age of an adult.

  • Well, Drinking age in the US varies by state and even city. In NYC for example, it is 21. In Columbus Oho it is 21 UNLESS with a parent in which case, there is no limit. When my boyfriend visits his children, he lets his 20 year old son have a beer at restaurants. It is legal there. e has been doing that since the boy was 18.

    Where I am from in Austria, we have a drinking age, but it is largely ignored. The Owner of the restaurant or beer cellar will decide. Beer and wine are part of the culture in Austria

    • Right and you know here in the United States, we are very strict on the drinking age. We act like it's the biggest crime.

  • You can legally drink beer and wine at 16 here, and the 'hard stuff' starting at 18. I think we're fine. Never understood why it's 21 in the US. Can't you vote at age 18?

    Tip: I hate beer too, but if you make panachƩ (1/3 sprite and 2/3 beer) it tastes pretty delicious and refreshing in a hot summer. I actually even make more of a 2/3 sprite 1/3 panachƩ.

    • thats how I drink my liquor actually. my mom thinks its stupid too, so im allowed to drink with the family.

      And yes, we can vote at 18 but not drink -_-

    • That's cool. ^

      That makes no sense at all. You are responsible enough to make decisions concerning the bodies of people of the whole country by voting for or against a cause, but not responsible enough to make decision regarding your own body. -.-

    • Well right now I'm drinking. But I know damn well I'm not going anywhere and its late night, in my room. So its safe. I'm not gonna o anything stupid, but law says I am.

  • in my country its 18!!

  • In my country it's 18.

    • I never got the whole 'American's are legally adults at 21', but they can join the military and drive well before their 21st birthday...
      Kind of an idiotic standard.

  • We allow our 18 year olds to fight and die for our country. I think they should be allowed to legally sit at a bar and have a drink too.

    • I support the drinking age to be 18 myself but mentioning the military is irrelevant.

    • It's not irrelevant at all. We'll let someone decide to put their life in jeopardy, but not whether they can take a drink? I think it highlights the double standards we place on these activities.

    • It isn't irrelevant at all. If you can force a young man to sign up for the draft, give an 18 y/o a gun and tell the how to fire and kill a person, and send them home a trained killer, I think they deserve a fucking beer after training and not be told they're "too young and immature" if they're trained to handle a deadly weapon.

What Guys Said 7

  • What most people don't know, is the drinking age actually varies from state to state. Here in my state of Ohio, an 18 to 20 year old can legally drink with a guardian OR spouse 21 and over, as long as that guardian or spouse (21 and over) gives permission. However, you can't buy alcohol legally here unless you are 21 or over.

    I think it should be 18 for ONE reason: You're a legal adult. It's your life at that point. If you want to drink once a year, or every day, that should be your choice. It's as simple as that. I also think you should be allowed to gamble at 18 as well.

    Of course, a popular argument is "But they will do stupid things while drunk." First of all, as I said before, when you're an adult, you should have FREE WILL legally. Second of all, alcohol makes people do stupid things at all ages. Some of the most irresponsible drunks in our country are middle-aged people. The average age for an OVI/DUI is around 39 years old, so does this mean we make the legal drinking age 39? No, because you can't assume EVERY person under 39 will be an idiot.

    It really just boils down to freedom as a legal ADULT.

  • As an American who lives in Europe, I noticed an interesting trend and actually looked into this some.

    So in the US it is 21, which many claim is too high, HOWEVER, the average age someone has their first drink in the US is 19 believe it or not.

    Many countries in Europe, the age is 16-18. What I found from talking to people and looking at reports is that they they have their first drinks at 12-14.

    Basically, having the higher drinking age, actually does delay the first time people drink- so it really does work!

    There are also many studies that show that while a occasional responsible drinking is no harm to anyone of any age, heavy drinking really does effect developing brains in ways we still don't even fully understand...

    I know I am in a huge minority, but I agree with our drinking age as it actually puts off the average first drinking age until after high school, which is good I think.

    Now I also Don't think gun ownership should be that low (or any to be honest). and the military age will never be moved because the younger you are, the more likely you are to be molded into a soldier and not think for yourself as much, hence why militaries heavily subsidies and recruit those who are still teens, and not those who have graduated college already.

    We should change the other things you mention, not the drinking age. But this is my opinion only!

    • Of course raising the drinking age DELAYS the age people should drink: Nobody is denying that.

      I'm just making a point where you're a LEGAL ADULT at 18, so therefore, we should be able to do whatever we want to our bodies.

  • I've already posted this on another question:
    "The reason the drinking age is 21 in the U. S. is because of the temperance movement by Protestant Christians in the Bible Belt, who believe alcohol is evil and (get this) drink GRAPE JUICE instead of wine during church services because they still think it's evil. Even though Jesus drank alcohol but whatever. This mentality led to prohibition in the 20th century but it did NOT blow over well so they settled with raising the drinking age from 18 to 21. This was combined with the fact that insurance companies figured that less teens drunk driving = less accidents and casualties = less money they have to pay, so the insurance companies fully supported this raise."

    • Good points.

      I would think drunk drivers of ANY age cause insurances to sped money but maybe that's just me.

  • well come over to germany :D itĀ“s legal at the age of 16 here and itĀ“s quite strong compared to your American pisswater :P

  • The simple fact is that the human brain, particularly the male brain isn't finished developing until the age of 24 so if you poison it with alcohol too early it won't work as well as it would've without it.

    • What about the female brain?

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    • @CincinnatiRedsfan No mate. You're just arguing for the sake of arguing. You've missed what the actual point is. I'm not doing this with you.
      I've already said all that needs to be said.

    • @sexualchrist No, I'm arguing legit points.

      I stand by my original reason: You're a legal adult at 18 and you can harm yourself however you want.

  • It used to be 18. People abused the privilege and that's why we can't have nice things. :P

  • You can thank the Temperance movement and Prohibition for that...

    • Prohibition clearly showed we, as Americans, literally can't live without alcohol. If anything the prohibition movement pretty much showed grown men STILL can't think clearly at 21.

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    • You don't seem to believe in people's freedom to decide for themselves whether they drink or not.

      Alcohol could still be prescribed, and I wonder if someone who was an alcoholic could appeal to their doctor for such a prescription to prevent total withdrawal...

    • I do, I'm just trying to explain to you that prohibition had its pros and cons. Jesus, read man.