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RamboLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:23 PM
Original message
States weighing lower age to drink
Edited on Sat Mar-08-08 10:24 PM by RamboLiberal
Source: Chicago Tribune

More than two decades after the U.S. set the national drinking age at 21, a movement is gaining traction to revisit the issue and consider allowing Americans as young as 18 to legally consume alcohol.

Serious discussions already are under way in several states.

In Vermont, the state Legislature has formed a task force that will study whether the drinking age should be lowered.

In South Dakota, a petition is circulating that would ask the state to allow 19- and 20-year-olds to legally buy beer no stronger than 3.2 percent alcohol, while in Missouri a group is attempting to collect the 100,000 signatures needed to get a measure on the November ballot to lower the state's drinking age to 18.

And in South Carolina and Wisconsin, lawmakers have proposed that active-duty military personnel younger than 21 be allowed to buy alcohol, a move similar to one that was rejected last year in New Hampshire.


Read more: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-teen...



I wouldn't have a problem with this if there was some way to keep them from driving or drinking till they are in danger of death from overcomsumption.
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Nitrogenica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:24 PM
Response to Original message
1. More deregulation?
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Jed Dilligan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 01:48 AM
Response to Reply #1
110. Hmm.
Equating individuals with corporations...

No.

Wanting industry regulated does NOT mean you subscribe to social control over individuals by the state.
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mrreowwr_kittty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:24 PM
Response to Original message
2. It's about damn time. The drinking age is some unconstitutional bullshit. nt
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:24 PM
Response to Original message
3. Hey....
If you can vote, enlist in the military.....then why not be able to have a beer?
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ChromeFoundry Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:39 PM
Response to Reply #3
13. agreed
Edited on Sat Mar-08-08 10:49 PM by ChromeFoundry
H.S.-age kids are pressured by recruiters non-stop from Freshman year to long after graduation to fight and die for a war for oil... but they are not old enough to drink a goddamn beer, is a double standard. I'm certainly not suggesting that I am promoting more alcohol use in this country (I think that stat is high enough already), but maybe we should raise the enlistment age to 21 to make it fair.

I have a real problem with the "selective" minimum age of responsibility in this country. If you are considered responsible enough sign a contract to enlist in the military at age 18, be tried as an adult, forced into signing up with Selective Services, etc... responsible judgments on alcohol consumption should be allowed at that age as well.
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happyslug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:07 PM
Response to Reply #13
34. Prior to WWII, it was illegal to ship anyone under 21 overseas
Congress change that age to 18 when the draft was adopted in 1941. Men could enlist earlier than age 21 during WWI for overseas duty, and the National Guard had members under age 21 as those units were called into Federal Service during Both WWI and WWII.

Earlier in history, i.e the Civil War, the enlistment age was 18, but most states did NOT have a minimum age for drinking at that time (i.e. it was legal for even pre-teens to drink).

In Medieval days, you started your military training at age 18, but were NOT expected to do actual combat till you were age 21 (Three years training to be a Soldier was presumed at that time). Now younger people did fight in unit but that was NOT the "ideal" ages, it just what happened more often then not, even when 21 was the Ideal age.

In Roman Days it was age 16, but again drinking had no minimum age.

Under the common Law the age of consent for sex was 12, an age we now believe is to young (Most states set the age at 14 or 16).

My point we have ALWAYS have different ages for different ages of Consent. Thus forbidding drinking till you are 21, has been justified for many years (more to prevent it from getting to younger than 18 then 18-21 year olds). Agreeing to Contract was dropped to 18 in the 1970s more do to lobbying by Collages than any movement from the Anti-Draft movement. Collages were tied of having to get parent's permission to loan money for collages do to the fact Collages students being under 21 could NOT make valid enforceable contracts. In fact if such underage collage students would denounce their loans entered before they turn 21, such loans were NOT enforceable in any court. The draft was already dead, not quite but close, when the voting age was dropped, but that was just part of the movement to treat 18 -21 years old like they were over 21. Prior to the early 1970s that was NOT the Case.

Different ages for different ages of consent reflect different concerns. Under the Common Law teenagers had sex, the court recognized that fact. 21 was to old to give the right of consent to sex. For Alcohol consumption, we want some age of consent, most people believe 12 is to young, but do you have a better age then 21? Same with Contracts do we really have a better age then 21, given we have used 18 for over 30 years?

I am comfortable with have drinking age at 21, the older I get the more I like to see a return to age 21 for Contracts (Would force Government to come up with direct payment for collages, and even pay for support of such children till they turn 21, a better age to start they own life than 18).
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 12:13 PM
Response to Reply #34
77. Contributions such as yours make visiting this forum ever-worthwhile!
I love a little historical discussion to put the issues in context!

:thumbsup:
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happyslug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 11:51 PM
Response to Reply #77
100. You could enter Annapolis and West Point at young as 12 in the 1800s.
Annapolis was formed in the 1830s, after the Secretary of War's teenage son was hung for Mutiny by the Captain of the ship he was an Ensign on. In the 1830s the Navy set up a School for Ensigns to both avoid such problems in the future AND to provide a more standard Education. The age to enter was the same as the age you entered the Work force in the 1800s, your teen years. Most people entered the workforce when they turn age 12 and of you had the money, the Collage Market.

Both Academies took in teenagers in the 1800s, Both would be view more like a High School today than a Collage of today (most Collages of that time period would also be more like High School than collages today). High Schools started about 1860 to prepare people for Collage. It was only after the Widespread adoption of High Schools did both academes started to require a High School Diploma BEFORE accepting people in (This occurred around 1900, it would take someone with some background on this subject to find out when that occurred, but many school districts did NOT have high schools till almost WWI). In fact one of the big differences between the US Armies of WWI and WWII was that the Majority of WWI soldiers were NOT high school graduates, while the Majority of WWII solders WERE (Through a high percentage of WWII soldiers did NOT have high School Diplomas, the vast majority of people having High School Diplomas is a product of the 1950s not before).

People worked as teenagers, not part time like today, but full time. As full time employees they had to quit school. One of the reason most states have Mandatory School ages was in the 1920s-1950s they was a movement to get more people high school Diplomas. While this started in the late 1800s, it did NOT really take off till after WWI, thus most Soldiers were High School Graduates in WWII, but NOT before. This also lead to the Academies (And most Collages) to go for the 18-22 year old student instead of the 14-18 year old Students (Which by 1900 was the High School Market, but prior to that time period was also a Collage Age Group).
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Fridays Child Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:25 PM
Response to Original message
4. This is movement in the wrong direction.
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TransitJohn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:48 PM
Response to Reply #4
20. You want to raise the drinking age?
To what? 25? 30? Ban it?
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TransitJohn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:49 PM
Response to Reply #20
23. One age.
That's what we need, to vote, serve in the armed forces, drink, drive, enter into contracts, etc. One age of majority: 18.
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:54 PM
Response to Reply #23
27. Agreed. n/t
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Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 12:38 AM
Response to Reply #23
51. I couldn't agree more !!!
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unblock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 01:05 AM
Response to Reply #23
53. yeah that makes sense. you can get drunk and drive on the same day.
real smart, that!

:crazy:
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 08:06 PM
Response to Reply #53
95. in a rented car, after joining the army
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trudyco Donating Member (975 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 08:04 PM
Response to Reply #95
135. and getting married? -nt
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Xenotime Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 09:55 AM
Response to Reply #23
69. It should really be 17
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Fridays Child Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 02:11 PM
Response to Reply #20
81. Ideally? Ban it.
Edited on Sun Mar-09-08 02:53 PM by Fridays Child
Alcohol consumption causes too much tragedy, on every level. We'd be much better off as a country, if we could wean ourselves off of booze.
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Dark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 04:02 PM
Response to Reply #81
88. Some people in the 1920s would like to have a word with you.
Psst: Prohibition causes far more harm and heartache than the substance.
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Fridays Child Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 08:13 PM
Response to Reply #88
98. I doubt it.
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 12:14 AM
Response to Reply #98
103. People still drank, they just drank shit--bathtub gin. Killed and blinded more than a few.
It didn't stop the practice, just drove it underground.

It did make the Kennedy family rich, that Prohibition, though!
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Fridays Child Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 04:54 AM
Response to Reply #103
114. Homemade meth is killing people, too...
...but I'm thinking it should remain illegal.
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-11-08 01:26 AM
Response to Reply #114
138. Well, I fail to see your effort at an analogy.
Wine and other alcoholic beverages have been around since before Christ. They're made from natural ingredients.

If you don't like it, don't drink it.

I am no expert on the Bible, but I don't recall seeing any chapter or verse about meth, which isn't made from ingredients found in nature.

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Xithras Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:19 PM
Response to Reply #103
122. Hardly, it just pushed quality production across the borders.
Distilleries went up almost overnight in Canada and Mexico following prohibition. That's what the whole Al Capone thing was about...controlling the flow of illegal booze coming in from Canada.
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-11-08 01:20 AM
Response to Reply #122
137. Not "hardly." Yes, production went over the border, but yes, bathtub gin was made to make up for
substantial gaps in the supply lines. Those gaps were MASSIVE.

And not just bathtub gin--moonshine, whiskey, beer, wine and all sorts of beverages were made at home or at covert distilleries in the woods and hills, and sold at speakeasies. Law enforcement was kept busy busting those guys--it wasn't all chasing rumrunners.

Vineyards stopped making wine, and made grape juice called VINE GLO. It came with instructions as to what NOT to do with it, because otherwise (horrors) it might turn into WINE! A lot of breweries in the US kept making "near beer" and also, surreptitiously, would occasionally crank out some "real beer" on the side.

Lots of people died when idiots fucked up the "receipt" for the home made hard liquor 'bathtub gin' and related products.


No one here knows their own history anymore, it seems.

Background reading:

http://www.digitalhistory.uh.edu/database/article_displ...

    seven years after Prohibition went into effect, the total deaths from adulterated liquor reached approximately 50,000, and there were many more cases of blindness and paralysis. According to one story, a potential buyer who sent a liquor sample to a laboratory for analysis was shocked when a chemist replied: "Your horse has diabetes."

    Prohibition quickly produced bootleggers, speakeasies, moonshine, bathtub gin, and rum runners smuggling supplies of alcohol across state lines. In 1927, there were an estimated 30,000 illegal speakeasies--twice the number of legal bars before Prohibition. Many people made beer and wine at home. It was relatively easy finding a doctor to sign a prescription for medicinal whiskey sold at drugstores.

    In 1919, a year before Prohibition went into effect, Cleveland had 1,200 legal bars. By 1923, the city had an estimated 3,000 illegal speakeasies, along with 10,000 stills. An estimated 30,000 city residents sold liquor during Prohibition, and another 100,000 made home brew or bathtub gin for themselves and friends. ... Prohibition created a huge consumer market unmet by legitimate means. Organized crime filled that vacuum left by the closure of the legal alcohol industry. Homicides increased in many cities, partly as a result of gang wars, but also because of an increase in drunkenness.

    Prohibition devastated the nation's brewing industry. St. Louis had 22 breweries before Prohibition. Only nine reopened after Prohibition ended in 1933. Anheiser-Busch made it through Prohibition by making ice cream, near beer, corn syrup, ginger ale, root beer, yeast, malt extract, refrigerated cabinets, and automobile and truck bodies.

    The jobs and tax revenue that a legal liquor industry would generate looked attractive as the country entered the Great Depression. During his presidential campaign in 1932, New York Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt, who never hid his fondness for martinis, called for Prohibition's repeal.





    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4176/is_2007070...

      HAYWARD -- No one would be surprised to know that Prohibition- era revenuers chased down moonshiners and smashed their stills in the hills of Kentucky and Tennessee.

      Ranches and farms in Castro Valley, the Hayward hills, and the shoreline's Russell City also had their share of illegal whiskey, gin, beer and winemaking equipment. And local efforts to flout the law resulted in plenty of raids by law enforcement in these parts between 1920 and 1933.

      The Hayward Area Historical Society's current "Prohibition" exhibit shows how this colorful period in American history affected the farm communities making up the greater Hayward area.





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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 12:12 AM
Response to Reply #81
102. Yeah, like...uh...SAUDI ARABIA!! No booze there!
Course, you can buy hashish without too much trouble....
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 12:59 AM
Response to Reply #81
106. You REALLY need to read up on Prohibition
It was popular enough to get a Constitutional amendment passed (not easy), but it caused so many problems that it lasted only 12 years.

You also need to go to Europe and see how people drink wine and beer with meals with no problems.
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Fridays Child Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 05:13 AM
Response to Reply #106
115. Evidently Europe has plenty of alcohol-related problems.
Here are a couple of links that took me about 30 seconds to find:
http://www.euro.who.int/mediacentre/PressBackgrounders/...
http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A35079-2004Dec...

And Prohibition never had a chance because because criminalizing alcohol consumption was only part of the equation. We were (and are) a drinking culture and that couldn't be changed in a mere in twelve years. Look at how slowly attitudes about smoking have changedand that's been with concerted and sustained efforts, at multiple levels.
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Thothmes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 08:07 AM
Response to Reply #115
116. Actually it did not criminalize consumption
The XVIII Amendment to the Constitution outlawed manufacture, transportation and sale of intoxicating liquors. It did not make personal consumption of booze a crime.
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Fridays Child Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 12:10 PM
Response to Reply #116
119. Thanks for the correction.
:)
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Tandalayo_Scheisskopf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:33 AM
Response to Reply #81
113. In 17 days I will celebrate my 10th year of sobriety.
So I know just a smidge about this stuff. And you know what?

It. Ain't. Gonna. Work.

You might not drink. I don't drink because I, all those around me and the cosmos are a lot better for the fact. But your choice is yours, mine is mine and others should get to make that choice on their own, with all the successes and failures that come with that choice.

One thing I have learned is that I am not wise enough to make choices like that for others. I have my hands filled making them for myself.
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Commie Pinko Dirtbag Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:46 PM
Response to Reply #81
124. Wow. A Prohibitionist. I thought they were extinct. -nt
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Orsino Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 05:54 PM
Response to Reply #81
131. Or maybe we could build a country in which people felt important...
...and needed the crutch of alcohol less. A nation that drives people to the bottle has no business banning the bottle.
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Endangered Specie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:27 PM
Response to Original message
5. It won't do anything, except perhaps free up police manhours
and give ALE 'agents' something better to do...



Come on, who here let the drinking age stop them from having a beer before they turned 21?
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:28 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. "Come on, who here let the drinking age stop them from having a beer before they turned 21?"
Exactly. If you want it bad enough, it's so easy to get.
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ChromeFoundry Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:52 PM
Response to Reply #7
26. It's very easy to make yourself, too...
and you can buy all the ingredients at any age.
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Dr.Phool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:19 PM
Response to Reply #7
45. The law in Ohio used to be 18yo for beer.
They tried to raise it, but it was defeated at the ballot box. Then the Federal Govt. threatened to cut off their highway funds unless they raised it to 21. So the legislature raised it.

Nice way to circumvent the will of the voters.
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:30 PM
Response to Reply #45
47. When was it 18 here?
When I was growing up, it was 19.
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we can do it Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 11:51 AM
Response to Reply #47
74. Late 70's You Could Get 3.2 Beer at 18
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Gormy Cuss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 03:57 AM
Response to Reply #45
57. The law used to be 18 in many states.
New York was one that had that minimum the longest and many states lowered the age in the 1970s. You are correct that it changed in response to a Federal threat in the form of the National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984.

As someone who came of age during that window of time when 18 was the common minimum, I think it had the potential to do less harm because there was less binge drinking -- why bother, when you can have it any time without fear of penalty? There was drunk driving among the 18-21 year olds, but it was a different time in terms of penalties attached to DUI -- I honestly don't know how different it would be now.
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NashVegas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 09:28 PM
Response to Reply #57
136. Some People Blame Binge Drinking On the Laws That Increased the Legal Age
I was ahead of the changes, just barely, each time it raised but my best friend was a year younger and it *sucked* that we had to risk getting arrested in order to drink together.

Socially, it was a stupid thing to do.
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 08:03 PM
Response to Reply #45
93. I could legally drink in NJ at 18 until that changed, too.
Wasn't technically legal at college in PA, but I could go home and drink.
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:27 PM
Response to Original message
6. I say either raise the draft and voting age, or lower the drinking age.
It's silly the way it is now.

Maybe they could go to "graduated licenses" like they do in Europe.
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RamboLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:29 PM
Response to Reply #6
8. Let's raise the enlistment age as well
Bet there wouldn't be as many 21 year olds willing to sign up.
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 12:09 PM
Response to Reply #8
75. I would go for "no deployment before 21" in terms of military service.
Some kids do get a boot in their ass from less-than-kindly parental units at 18, and have no where to land save the military. I had a lot of those types working for me over the years--good kids, generally, from rough circumstances. So sure, take 'em on, but keep 'em stateside--nothing but training and domestic assignments until they reach the age of "majority" such as it would be defined.

Such a move would, in effect, substantially reduce the number of teens in the military. Of course, they LIKE the "kids"--they're fitter, they can take more abuse, they need less rest and recovery, so it wouldn't be such a good deal for military planners.
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Botany Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:29 PM
Response to Original message
9. Hell I went to Ohio U. and the 21 law was a joke but ....
... w/ age comes a little knowledge when we had 18 &
21 states the states w/ 18 as the drinking age had
awful stats for DWI deaths & accidents.
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uppityperson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:31 PM
Response to Original message
10. I used to cross into SD for 3.2 beer. Had to drink by the pitcherful to notice though.
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jedr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:37 PM
Response to Original message
11. In Europe the drinking age is 16, and 18 to drive;
Edited on Sat Mar-08-08 10:39 PM by jedr
Let's kids get the silly-assed drinking behind them and unable to drive until they have some experience as how to handle their alcohol . Seems to work fine. Underage drinking is nothing more than a HUGE money making form of revenue for states and I know of few people who have waited till age 21 to have their first drink.
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:40 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. 18 to Drive?
Most kids wouldn't be able to work and save for college.
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jedr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:45 PM
Response to Reply #14
18. College is far more affordable there.
Also , as having raised three sons,I feel that 16 is too young to drive. The possible exception being farming.
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:48 PM
Response to Reply #18
21. College seems to be affordable everywhere, but here.
Mine did very well (driving) at 16.
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jedr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:51 PM
Response to Reply #21
25. Mine didn't, seems a wrecked car and a DUI are the norm...n/t
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ChromeFoundry Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:58 PM
Response to Reply #25
29. hopefully no one was seriously injured...
and yours learned from his error in judgment. God knows that too many adults don't learn from their mistakes, ever.
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jedr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:05 PM
Response to Reply #29
33. For clairfication;
Edited on Sat Mar-08-08 11:10 PM by jedr
the DUI came when a friend bought my son a pitcher of zombies for his 21st birthday and he drove home drunk ( thanks alot!). The other two came from open container and underage drinking during tailgating at a football game( I was not there). The wrecks were fender benders , no booze involved .
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:16 PM
Response to Reply #33
41. Glad to hear that
the accidents were fender benders, with no alcohol involved. Also, glad to hear that he's okay.
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:04 PM
Response to Reply #25
32. I'm sorry to hear that.....
I hope he/she is okay.
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ChromeFoundry Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:45 PM
Response to Reply #14
19. Europe's mass-transit systems are much more refined than ours
When I was in Europe/Central Europe, i was very impressed by their public transportation systems. Everyone relied on it... in most cities in the US, it's a joke or not exactly safe.
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jedr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:48 PM
Response to Reply #19
22. this whole discussion is starting to show how backward;
The US has become. Beer and wine are staples in Europe and I'd rather have a drunk kid on a bus than in a car.
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Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:49 PM
Response to Reply #14
24. In France, college tuition is 250 Euros. They spend money on education/health care like we with war.
Edited on Sat Mar-08-08 10:53 PM by Selatius
That's the way the cookie crumbled. Edited to add 250 Euros per year. Actually, if we wanna get technical, it can swing between 200 to 700 Euros for a 4-year degree depending on the school and the discipline studied.
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:01 PM
Response to Reply #24
30. $385 BUCKS for a College Degree?
I was so envious watching "Sicko" when France (as well as other countries) were mentioned in regard to education, health care and the like and how little they have to spend.
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Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 03:13 AM
Response to Reply #30
55. Well, it's simply because they have higher priority in their budget than in the US.
Edited on Sun Mar-09-08 03:14 AM by Selatius
In the US, the biggest item in the discretionary budget (not Medicare/Social Security since they're legally mandated) is the Dept. of Defense. Fiscal year 2008 is slated to be 600+ billion dollars. The latest figures I dug up for the Dept. of Education was somewhere around 55 billion a year.

The message is clear. Your kid is worth more in a flag-draped coffin than he is alive building a life. That's what I get out of it, anyway.

In France, they pay taxes for it, and they get it back in the form of services. We pay taxes, too. We just don't get it back in the form that helps us more. We get guns and bombs instead.
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 10:49 AM
Response to Reply #55
72. Sadly Enough...
I Completely Agree With You.
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fujiyama Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 04:58 AM
Response to Reply #24
63. Don't forget prisons! We love to spend money on those as well!
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RamboLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:08 PM
Response to Reply #14
35. Actually a lot of kids aren't driving at 16
seems most are starting at 17 or 18 from what I hear. Probably insurance rates have something to do with it along with greater license restrictions.
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jedr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:18 PM
Response to Reply #35
43. My youngest is 19 and still has no license;
Edited on Sat Mar-08-08 11:25 PM by jedr
He had an underage drinking and insurance has made it out of reach. I would rather haul his butt around than suffer the cost. I have no doubts about his ability to drive , but spent too many sleepless nights with the other two until they came home safe. ( spell check not working, please excuse)
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eilen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 07:50 AM
Response to Reply #14
68. Most of the kids in my son's high school
don't work jobs for college anyway. They are in time greedy sports programs to earn scholarships and don't have time after the loads and loads of homework they get. Any jobs they work pay for ipods, junk food, music, designer clothing, and to save for a car/insurance. My neighbor basically ferries her teen to work and back or they walk/take a bus.
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 08:06 PM
Response to Reply #68
94. It does seem that a great many of the teens I know spend the
money they make on their jobs as quickly as they earn it. So not my style, and thankfully, not my kids'.

College is just crazy expensive anyway you slice it these days.
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 12:17 AM
Response to Reply #14
104. In some places they have "graduated" licenses. You can drive a moped at fourteen or so,
and at sixteen or thereabouts you can drive an underpowered little car like a FIAT or Piaggio. You can't get a license for a "big" car until you're 18.

So you can still get around, but you're putt-putting, and keeping to the right. You're also spending very little on gas.
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:30 PM
Response to Reply #11
48. I'd support drinking at 16 and not driving til 21
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eilen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 07:46 AM
Response to Reply #11
67. I agree, lower the drinking age and raise the driving age
less people/cars on the road is better.
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Fridays Child Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 03:03 PM
Response to Reply #11
86. According to WHO, one in four deaths of European males aged 15 to 29...
...is alcohol-related. And, from a 2004 Washington Post article, about 25% of all traffic fatalities in Europe are alcohol-related. If they're doing better than us, it's not by much.
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Jed Dilligan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 01:48 AM
Response to Reply #11
111. But the main thing is they have walkable cities
with excellent public transportation. Driving to the bar is an aberration of American life.
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bluestateguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:38 PM
Response to Original message
12. I'd only support this if drunk driving penalties were also increased
You drive drunk and kill or injure someone: mandatory minimum prison time, and permanent revocation of your license with no possibility of getting it back.

Otherwise 3 DUI's and it's a permanent revocation of the DL and mandatory prison time.
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fujiyama Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 05:06 AM
Response to Reply #12
64. Stiffer penalties for drunk driving are an option
but that may not be terribly effective in the long run.

I think investing in better mass transit would help. I remember on New Year's eve I was on the train from NJ to NYC and it was amusing to see the drunks on the train but it was no big deal because they weren't driving...I thought that was kind of nice. I've seen way too many people in suburbs that feel the need to go to a bar, get wasted, and then drive. I'm not excusing their judgment, but punitive actions will only go so far.
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 01:03 AM
Response to Reply #64
107. Japan is that way, too
Foreigners complain about people being falling down drunk on the trains late at night, but at least they're not driving and have no excuse to drive.
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High Plains Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 01:11 PM
Response to Reply #12
79. Yeah, our prisons are so empty now.
Actually, I think multiple DUIs is a felony in many states already.

And I suspect that if you hit or kill someone while driving drunk, you will go to prison.

But can't we come up with better solutions to our social problems than "throw 'em in prison"? That seems to be our response to damned near everything. And it's working so well, ain't it?
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Frank Cannon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 02:37 PM
Response to Reply #79
83. I don't mind throwing people in jail who are violent or a danger to others
AFAIC, anyone willfully driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol fits into that category.

I have no problem at all with the guy who keeps a stash of weed at home for his in-home use.
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Irreverend IX Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 01:37 PM
Response to Reply #12
80. Why not permanent revocation with one DUI?
Drive drunk once, you never get your license back.

Get caught driving after license revocation for DUI, mandatory minimum 20 years in prison.

That would shut down drunk driving pretty fast, and ending the drug war would free up plenty of prison space.
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hedgehog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 12:01 AM
Response to Reply #80
101. The only problem with that is that habitual drunks will continue to
drive, license or no license. I worked with a guy who drove for a year on a suspended license. I have no idea how he managed to keep the plates on his car since New York has mandatory auto insurance. He really pissed them off at work when he drove the company car without a license! The funy thing? He might have gotten away with it except that about 2 weeks before his license would have been returned, he got caught DWI while driving about 90MPH though a village at 2AM.
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Irreverend IX Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:06 AM
Response to Reply #101
112. That's where the second law comes in...
After a drunk gets their license pulled, they can keep driving, but they'll do so with the knowledge that their next traffic stop will lead to them spending two decades in the big house. After a while, all the hardcore drunks will be locked up.
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angrycarpenter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:41 PM
Response to Original message
15. I would rather they bought pot instead.
I did some stupid things when I turned 18. No one is prepared to just start drinking all at once. You have to work up to it under controlled conditions.
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Scooter24 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:42 PM
Response to Original message
16. I'm on the fence about this issue...but whatever the outcome
it should not favor those who choose a military career over those who choose to go to a trade school or college. It should be equal across the board.

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Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:43 PM
Response to Original message
17. Only if MANDATORY SEATBELT LAWS are enacted in ALL 50 STATES.
Edited on Sat Mar-08-08 10:44 PM by Selatius
Drunk drivers will ALWAYS be on the road regardless of drinking age. That said, everybody should be wearing seatbelts. You can chart the downward spiral of roadway fatalities over the decades where more and more states passed mandatory seatbelt laws.
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Donnachaidh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #17
70. the drunks are usually the survivors in crashes
The ones who DIE are the poor sod's that got plowed in to. Even WITH seat belts. I would rather NOT lower the drinking age with the problems of cell phones AND stupid teenagers driving dangerously when drunk. Some dumbasses will try to act like they're invulnerable when driving drunk, and kill someone else doing it.

Georgia has a graduated license program which I thank the gods for every day. But we still see floral monuments on the sides of the highway, put up by parents who have lost kids due to drunk driving. Less teenage drinking means less DEATH on the highways.

I have no problem with raising the draft age to make it *fair* all around.
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Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 02:25 PM
Response to Reply #70
82. Eh, it's 50-50 from what I've seen. The drunk is just as likely to die as the victim.
Edited on Sun Mar-09-08 02:26 PM by Selatius
Even with 21 as the drinking age, people still die due to drunk drivers, but the number of fatalities across our roads is lower now because of mandatory seatbelt laws. My state had it for years now. If the US is to move to a lower drinking age to be consistent with the voting age, the draft age, the age of majority where one can legally sign a contract, etc. then it shouldn't come unless all states have mandatory seatbelt laws.

In France, you have to be 18 to get a license, but here I hear that if we did that, a lot of teenage workers would be put out of work as a result of having no car to get to work. The only difference is that in France they have highly sophisticated and safe mass transit networks that people rely upon. In the US, not the case.

I'm not saying it's going to happen (it probably won't due to the modern equivalent of the Temperance Movement), but if the majority decides to drop the drinking age, I'd ask for a requirement for seatbelts be tacked onto the proposal before signing on. Also, I'd like to require side airbags in all doors of a vehicle in case of a side-collision.
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Fountain79 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 02:54 PM
Response to Reply #17
85. If the state can't control your behavior one way...
it should control it another way? That's the idea?
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salin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 10:58 PM
Response to Original message
28. The whole thing (national age) was dubious to begin with... Highway funds
were the leverage point. States, raise your age or do not get highway funds.... was the message. If I recall the only state to resist (and take he initial hit) was Louisiana. And the hit was hard enough to quickly get Louisiana to fall in line.

What do highway funds (paving, bridges, etc.) have to do with state drinking ages?
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ChromeFoundry Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:02 PM
Response to Reply #28
31. also true with the national maximum 55 mph speed limit of the 70's
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happyslug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:14 PM
Response to Reply #28
40. Pennsylvania and Vermont were the first states to be blackmailed this way.
It was in the 1980s, Pennsylvania and Vermont were the last states to issue paper Driver license (i.e. NO Pictures). The Federal Government told both states to adopt picture driver license or lose Federal Funds. This was being pushed by Banks for their wanted Driver's license to be used as ID, and paper license were NOT reliable for IDs.

Did PA want picture license? No, the state were perfectly happy with paper. The state did NOT want to use it as an ID, the State only wanted you to carry a license that you had permission of the state to drive. This had NOTHING to do with building highways, it was to Banks wanting people to have ID.

Thus your point, what does state drinking age have to do with Federal Highway funds? The same as having Pictures on your Driver's License. The Feds wanted it and the state had to agree to lose Federal Highway funds.
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Thothmes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 08:18 AM
Response to Reply #28
117. Because the Federal Government
cannot directly regulate the drinking age in any state, since that is not one of the enumerated powers authorized to the Government or prohibited for the states to exercise. The only way the Feds can influence the legal drinking age is through withholding federal funds. The same is generally true of Education. If you do not follow the guidelines of NCLB we will cut your Federal school money off. A State is free to completely end NCLB participation if they are willing to sacrifice their Federal education money for that principle. But what we have allowed to happen since the mid 20th century is
is a ever expanding addiction to Federal money at the state level. Remember the "golden rule" He that hath the gold, maketh the rules. This is how the Federal Government can exercise policy control over matters which are clearly not within federal power as defined by the Constitution. JMO
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Zuiderelle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:52 PM
Response to Reply #28
125. That's certainly interesting. Who, politically, was behind this?
I don't recall when the national age went into effect. Was it Reagan? Or Bush I?
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Thothmes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 07:41 PM
Response to Reply #125
133. Don't recall directly, but
it seems to me that it was during the Nixon years.
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Zuiderelle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 07:52 PM
Response to Reply #133
134. I don't think so.
Edited on Mon Mar-10-08 07:53 PM by PelosiFan
I turned 18 in a state that allowed drinking at 18. And that was the year Reagan was elected. So, it had to be after 1980.
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LiberalFighter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:10 PM
Response to Original message
36. I would be against SC and WI changing it just for military.
It's either all or none.

If they did lower the drinking age it would be best imo that it wasn't lower than 19. It would be for the purpose of reducing the number of students that are in high school from having legal access.
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LiberalFighter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:12 PM
Response to Reply #36
37. It is legal for minors to drink alcohol in Wisconsin
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pfitz59 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:12 PM
Response to Original message
38. I used to walk into Mexico to drink....
when I was 18. Go down to TJ and have a pitcher of Margaritas! I also legally drank before 21 in Hawaii, Wisconsin and Florida. Bought 3.2 beer in Colorado at 20. I've never had a DUI, or been arrested for drunk in public. The drinking laws in this country are a crime! About time to make them rational.
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LiberalFighter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:14 PM
Response to Reply #38
39. When did you "legally" drink before 21 in Wisconsin?
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pfitz59 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:17 PM
Response to Reply #39
42. 1982
thats my recollection
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LiberalFighter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:19 PM
Response to Reply #42
44. Okay... researched and see Wisconsin changed it in 86
but there is a big loophole.
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pfitz59 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-08-08 11:28 PM
Response to Reply #44
46. many states have loopholes....
the 21 law is very inconsistent. when i lived in florida in 1982, and again from 84-86 it was legal to drink and drive, hell, liquor barn had drive through beer on tap! "fill 'er up!"
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gmudem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 12:29 AM
Response to Original message
49. Speaking as someone with experience in the subject
Underage drinkers have very little trouble getting alcohol, and believe it or not many of us are very smart about drinking and driving. I just think that the whole argument about the drinking age being 21 to prevent kids from DUI is pretty flimsy, and not to mention plenty more people over the age of 21 do that.

It is truly ridiculous that people can serve in the military and not legally buy a beer.
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mrreowwr_kittty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 01:46 AM
Response to Reply #49
54. I think it's overprotective parents wanting to meddle in their kids' lives as long as they can.
And using the force of law to do so.
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gmudem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 04:15 AM
Response to Reply #54
58. It's a little bit of that.
It doesn't help that the federal government would not give any highway money to states that lowered the drinking age, and I think that's really the mean reason that it's been 21 for so long. There are some parents who realize that they aren't going to be able to stop their kids from drinking, so they make sure when they do it they don't do anything stupid.

The drinking age of 21 is about as good a policy as "say no to drugs."
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CRF450 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 06:11 AM
Response to Reply #49
66. Yup, a neighbor accross the street from my dad's lets her 14yo daughter drink
In fact they have little parties almost every Saturday night. Many other teens also have gone their and had some beer. The ol'lady has a strict rule for everyone that drinks, are not to drive away no matter how much they drank, unless they have a sober friend to drive them home.

I have another friend (16) who has pretty uptight parents, yet they let him drink a little. Not enough to get totally drunk, but enough for a buzz. Sometimes when his mom buy's a new drink, she'll let him test taste it before she has any.
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Bandit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 12:11 PM
Response to Reply #49
76. In mid to late seventies the voting age and drinking age was lowered
There was a VERY substantial increase in fatalities of under twenty one year olds involving alcohol. It was major and in every single state. That is the rational for increasing the age back to 21. Not sure I agree with the decision but that is the fact of the matter.
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TheMightyFavog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 08:33 PM
Response to Reply #76
99. Also recall that penalties for DUI back then were not what they are today.
Often times all you got was a nominal fine and maybe a night in the drunk tank. No license suspension, minimal jail time.
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krkaufman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 12:37 AM
Response to Original message
50. Is there an age when the brain is considered to be fully-developed? n/t
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defendandprotect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 04:29 AM
Response to Reply #50
60. If so, couldn't we use that to keep them from taking anyone under 25 into the military?
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krkaufman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 05:15 AM
Response to Reply #60
65. I think that the point. Before then, they still feel invulnerable and are malleable.
Good point, though, if that's the point you're making. If you're old enough to die for the country, you're old enough to have a beer.
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pepperbear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 12:53 AM
Response to Original message
52. on the off chance that this happens, watch for a new musical scene the likes of Athens or...
Edited on Sun Mar-09-08 12:54 AM by pepperbear
...Seattle come out of one of these locales, especially if it's a college town.
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pnwmom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 03:50 AM
Response to Original message
56. There is some evidence that the higher age level has PROMOTED drinking
rather than reducing it, at least at the college level.

There was a lot less binge drinking when I went to college, during a time when 18 year olds could drink, and alcohol was available at parties. One reason is because kids still drink, but they start before they go to the parties. Instead of going to a party sober, and having a few beers over the course of the night, they quickly drink a few beers in their rooms -- then go searching for a party already buzzed. Often there's liquor available at the parties, anyway, so they end up drinking even more.
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defendandprotect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 04:28 AM
Response to Original message
59. While fully understanding the hazards of booze in youth . . .
it's ridiculous that we're punishing 14 year olds as adults and throwing them in prison with adults ---

and we're taking kids into the military --- kids who basically know nothing about what's ahead of them ---

You can get married in most states at 18 --- some 16?

Kids go away to college and get involved in secret drinking --- marthon drinking ---
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Ravachol Donating Member (138 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 04:31 AM
Response to Original message
61. Ah, now, that would be something!
It's about time the USA lowers its legal drinking age to something more reasonable, logical. Preventing people, especially at such an age, from experiencing it themselves usually leads to illegality & problems. Just like sexual abstinence, without sex education, brings higher rates of - unwanted - teen pregnancy.
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provis99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 04:37 AM
Response to Original message
62. no drinking until 21 is bizarre
How come a person can get married at 14 in some states, make a porn movie at 18, join the army and kill people, vote, be tried in court as an adult, but can't drink until 21? Damned religious fundamentalist booze-hating nuts must be involved here at some stage.
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Pavulon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 10:17 AM
Response to Original message
71. Forbidden Fruit...
The reason 21 is stupid is because it criminalize normal behavior. I drank, at home with my folks, before 21. I followed common sense and was given adult like logic.

By banning it, you make it more of a challenge.

Dont get stupid drunk. If you do don't do it around strangers And certainly do not drive.

OS when I got to college I never did the dumb shit that others did. I had a good time and didn't make all the mistakes a person with no controls and no experience could make.
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ozymandius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 11:39 AM
Response to Original message
73. Personally, I have long believed that the drinking and driving ages should be switched.
Learn to drink before you learn to drive. It would probably do wonders in dissipating the mystique about alcohol.
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Traction311 Donating Member (229 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 12:24 PM
Response to Original message
78. Good
An 18 year old can star in a porno, smoke, and go to war. So why not have a beer?
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Fountain79 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 02:53 PM
Response to Original message
84. If you are charged with a felony at 18,
if you can vote at 18, if you can serve in the military at 18, then yes drinking should be allowed. I don't see how having drinking age has curtailed people drinking before 21. If anything it seems to fuel the idea that you should drink as much as you can when one does drink at that age.
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TexasBushwhacker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 03:50 PM
Response to Original message
87. As someone who was 18 back when that was the drinking age
I don't recall it making us drink more. It was there, and there were kids who overdid it, but most didn't. It didn't have the "forbidden fruit" quality that it has when the drinking age is 21. When I was teaching years later, when the age had been changed back to 21, most of my 9th grade students (14 and 15 year olds) had tried alcohol and some drank regularly. Waiting until 21 was deemed impossible, so they went ahead and started early, earlier than we did when the drinking age was 18. The one thing I can't argue with is statistics. There are far more minors involved in drunk driving accidents when the legal drinking age is lower.
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bamacrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 04:43 PM
Response to Original message
89. Well if you can die for your country you should be able to have a beer.
BUT, why are people trying to put less restrictions on something as potentially dangerous as alcohol? Weed is 100% safe yet is demonized by everyone, this is just fucking dumb, our country is really fucking dumb sometimes.

:smoke:
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mountainvue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 05:09 PM
Response to Original message
90. What's to keep 30, 40 or 50 year olds from
driving drunk?
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 08:08 PM
Response to Reply #90
97. Not enough, apparently.
Regardless of age, I think the penalties need to be prohibitively strong. Loss of license on first offense or something. People seem to find it all too easy to drive after drinking. Very scary.
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galledgoblin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 06:00 PM
Response to Original message
91. lower the drinking age, throw some more excise taxes on alcohol
use the revenue to invest in our sorely lacking public transit system
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 08:01 PM
Response to Original message
92. You know, I sort of agree with you
I'd prefer the driving age is higher. That's where the really dangerous stuff happens, it seems.

But as a parent, I also understand the urge to wrap them in bubble wrap and keep them locked in their rooms til they're 45!
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ckramer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-09-08 08:08 PM
Response to Original message
96. Get rid of the Daylight saving time switching too

That's even more stupid than the drinking law.
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w4rma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 12:45 AM
Response to Original message
105. Good. 18 year olds can die for our country in war, but have to drink illegally. (nt)
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 01:15 AM
Response to Original message
108. American attitudes toward alcohol are screwed up beyond belief
We treat it is as downright evil for someone under 21, so much so that teens can get picked up for "minor in possession," and yet, if an adult drinks, the connotations are positive: sophistication, relaxation, conviviality, hospitality.

So teens see something that other adults and the mass media portray as sophisticated, relaxing, convivial, and hospitable, and then they're told that it's absolutely forbidden to them.

My brothers and I were raised European style with respect to alcohol in our extended family. From the time we were about 12, we got a glass of wine with dinner on family occasions. By the time I was in high school, I was included when one of our relatives offered cocktails to the adults before dinner.

However, getting drunk was absolutely taboo, so I had a lot of roll models for responsible drinking.

The result? I am strictly an occasional dinner, mostly with meals, maybe a beer on a hot day. I've been drunk a grand total of three times in my life (the learning stage), the last time being thirty years ago. One brother doesn't drink at all. The other is an occasional drinker like myself.

I was never tempted to drink as a form of rebellion. After all, when you can do something in front of your parents and grandparents, it doesn't feel like rebellion.

When I was about to be confirmed (at the age of 14), most of the kids in my class were looking forward to their first Communion, when they would get a sip of wine. I didn't see what the fuss was about. I could easily get a whole glass of wine whenever we went to a relative's house for dinner.

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Chovexani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 03:03 PM
Response to Reply #108
129. That is the healthiest way to do it
We do it the European way in my family too. I think that's one of the reasons why I could never understood why people my age love to go out and get hammered all the time. When it's been a normal thing your whole life, I don't think you feel the need to go to such extremes.

We are such a puritanical country, that's it's no wonder our attitudes are so screwed up.
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GoddessOfGuinness Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 01:23 AM
Response to Original message
109. If you're old enough to die for your country...
You're old enough to have a fucking drink.
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jakem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 08:22 AM
Response to Original message
118. I think Mojo said it best:


Now another thing is kinda gettin' on my nerves...

another thing that's kinda gettin' on my nerves is this

national 21 drinking age

Huh? what do ya think about that?

A bunch of malarky

whatever malarky is man

it's a whole bunch of it..

you know if Reagan finally gets the war he's lookin for

you think he's gonna be draftin' 21 year olds?

No man they're gonna be draftin' 18 and 19 year olds

but ya cant buy beer

you can get married and screw yourself up real good

but ya can't buy beer

ya can charge 8 million dollars on the mastercharge

but ya can't buy beer

you can vote for one fool or another

but ya can't buy beer

'cause this is America

America that's run by the lowest common denominator

the money

how many units did ya move Mojo?

how many things of apple juice did ya sell?

c'mon suckers- c'mon feel it

Burn down the malls
Burn down the malls

Burn down the malls

Alright all you weirdo's out there
all you moralistic twisted evil little icepickers

you say "we wanna censor rock and roll"

we wanna decide what you read

what you watch

what you listen to

ooo ooo ooo Mr. Falwell

oooh Miss Tipper Gore

wait till i got you on the floor

we gonna tie you up inside of a shopping mall

then we're gonna then we're gonna

we're gonna have a war on drugs

a war on drugs

we outta have a war on war you suckers!!!
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noonwitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 01:03 PM
Response to Original message
120. If you are 18-20 and can't get hold of alcohol, then you just aren't smart enough to drink
18-20 year olds usually don't have any problem getting hold of liquor. Having the drinking age set at 21 makes it hard for 15 and 16 year olds to get it.

In addition, after the age was raised in the 70s, drunk driving accidents for people aged 18-20 dropped substantially.

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snooper2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 01:50 PM
Response to Original message
121. That's a bad Idea..
If you want to get drunk at 19 your going to be able to do it, trust me...

If the drinking age was lower when I was 18-21, I would have been in a LOT more trouble than I was during those years...already drinking plenty...
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librechik Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:31 PM
Response to Original message
123. Sure--and raise the legal age of driving to 24!
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iamthebandfanman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:52 PM
Response to Original message
126. uhhh... so now u can drink at a younger age but
STILL NO MARIJUANA REFORM!?

what a crock
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iamthebandfanman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:52 PM
Response to Original message
127. uhhh... so now u can drink at a younger age but
STILL NO MARIJUANA REFORM!?

what a crock
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WinkyDink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 02:57 PM
Response to Original message
128. Let them look at Britain.
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-11-08 02:09 AM
Response to Reply #128
139. Those kids get puke-drunk, many of 'em. They're not like the French or Italian kids, who
can party but not quite so hard. At least that's my purely anecdotal impression.
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DuaneBidoux Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 05:14 PM
Response to Original message
130. More people will die, in cars especially. But it doesn't make sense to fight and not drink.
Anybody that has to go kill someone should be allowed to have several drinks after the act.

When I was 18 I lived in Kansas and the drinking age was 18 (for liquor as well). But there was a horrific increase in drunk driving deaths after the law was changed and so along with many other states they began rolling it back.

If they do it they need to put on a special tax which goes exclusively to beefing up the drunk driving cops to be much more vigilent.
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superconnected Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-10-08 05:57 PM
Response to Original message
132. Actually, I'd prefer to raise the fight and die age to 25.
Edited on Mon Mar-10-08 05:57 PM by superconnected
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