The Instigator
CUA
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
ADreamOfLiberty
Con (against)
Winning
6 Points

Drinking Age.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
ADreamOfLiberty
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/13/2013 Category: People
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,779 times Debate No: 40477
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (12)
Votes (3)

 

CUA

Pro

The drinking age should be 18 for multiple reasons. When someone turns 18 they gain a multitude of rights and responsibilities. You are allowed to serve and die for your country; however, you cannot enjoy a beer with friends. While it is true, there are a lot of accidents associated with teenage drinking. An 18 year old drinking age would allow a safer drinking environment, for teens who will most likely drink anyway. There would be no need to hide the fact that a teenager has been drinking, and there will be no shame in seeking help when under the influence of alcohol. This would cut down on drunk driving in teens.
ADreamOfLiberty

Con

"When someone turns 18 they gain a multitude of rights and responsibilities. You are allowed to serve and die for your country; however, you cannot enjoy a beer with friends."

Why should drinking be one of those rights?

"While it is true, there are a lot of accidents associated with teenage drinking. An 18 year old drinking age would allow a safer drinking environment, for teens who will most likely drink anyway. There would be no need to hide the fact that a teenager has been drinking, and there will be no shame in seeking help when under the influence of alcohol. This would cut down on drunk driving in teens."

The same could be said for a 16 year old drinking age.
Debate Round No. 1
CUA

Pro

18 year old people are considered legal adults. They are considered responsible for their actions. 18 year olds can be put to death for something they have done because they are accountable for their action. There is no reason that an 18 year old cannot be given the responsibility of being able to enjoy alcohol. This does not apply for sixteen year olds, for one they are not considered adults in almost all aspects except driving. As a sixteen year old you may not have learned all the responsibilities of driving. Most 16 year olds are in their sophomore or junior year of high school and may not have learned to appreciate the full consequences of alcohol.
ADreamOfLiberty

Con

Ok, so it sounds like if someone is 'responsible for their actions' then they can take risks like possibly impair their judgment.

But that's not absolute, obviously taking illegal drugs is a risk of impairing judgment yet people are not permitted to do this despite being fully responsible for their actions.

Theoretically you could include alcohol as a mind altering drug, the only reason it's not banned is because of tradition and the resistance to prohibition.

Alcohol in context of current law should then be seen as an exception, something that is specially allowed. It is already subject to far less restrictions than other drugs. Why should this principle of responsibility = right to risk impaired judgment be further applied to alcohol consumption?

What is the justification for this principle? Some might say that you don’t have the right to do something that might put others in risk even if it’s only indirectly.

"Most 16 year olds are in their sophomore or junior year of high school and may not have learned to appreciate the full consequences of alcohol."

18 year olds may not have learned appreciate the full consequences of alcohol. [hec there are some 50 year olds who haven't]

Debate Round No. 2
CUA

Pro

Firstly, I think there is a misunderstanding of alcohol. While it is true alcohol can alter someone's mind, it like all things must be had in moderation. The emphasis of my argument is not that alcohol is a good or bad thing, but that 18 year olds are capable of understanding this moderation and can use alcohol for enjoyable but not necessarily destructive purposes. The argument previously put forward that "Some might say that you don"t have the right to do something that might put others in risk even if it"s only indirectly." while true is not pertaining to the argument I am trying to discuss. Alcohol is legal regardless. I am saying that someone who is 18 should be able to enjoy this just as much as someone who is 21.
Secondly, 18 year olds are expected to understand and accept the consequences they will face as adults and alcohol should be no different. A 16 year old is not expected to take on the responsibilities of an adult as compared to an 18 year old.
ADreamOfLiberty

Con

There's no misunderstanding I've been drinking alcohol since I was 15 and I've never gotten drunk. The law isn't there for people like me.

"18 year olds are capable of understanding this moderation and can use alcohol for enjoyable but not necessarily destructive purposes."

Ceded, but do you also admit that 16 year olds are also capable of understanding moderation is important?

"Alcohol is legal regardless."

Not for 18 year olds...

"I am saying that someone who is 18 should be able to enjoy this just as much as someone who is 21."
Why should they? You've said they are responsible for their acts, but that is true whether they drink alcohol or smoke weed. You've said they can understand moderation is important but so can people a good deal younger than they are.

If those are the only two principles you are using then 16 year olds should be able to take drink if they can answer a moderation questionnaire or something and 18 year olds should be able to take whatever drug they want. Do you agree with that?

"Secondly, 18 year olds are expected to understand and accept the consequences they will face as adults and alcohol should be no different. A 16 year old is not expected to take on the responsibilities of an adult as compared to an 18 year old."
In other words the 'understands moderation' is not enough by itself to justify legality. Presumably it must be combined with the other criteria then?

Debate Round No. 3
CUA

Pro

No, I understand that 16 year olds can understand proper moderation. The key difference between 16 and 18 year olds which is being missed is that an 18 year in the eyes of the law are considered legal adults who can make their own informed and responsible decisions. A 16 year old however is still under the protection of their parents in that the parents take responsibility for their kids actions. An 18 year old no longer has a legal guardian because he is entrusted to know his or her consequences.
Secondly, The quote "alcohol is legal regardless" is taken out of context. It is understood that it is not legal for 18 year olds or this argument would have no purpose. That quote is showing how alcohol unlike drugs is legal regardless as to whether or not it should be. As a reminder this argument is saying that if there is a drinking age it should be 18. The main reason for this is consistency. 18 year olds are given other rights and responsibilities as an adult, and as an adult they should be allowed to drink.
ADreamOfLiberty

Con

"No, I understand that 16 year olds can understand proper moderation. The key difference between 16 and 18 year olds which is being missed is that an 18 year in the eyes of the law are considered legal adults who can make their own informed and responsible decisions."
You have used two principles so far, from your statement here I infer that you believe that when both of these are true about X, X should be legal at age Y.

1. People at age Y can understand the risks involved with X.

2, People are held legally responsible for their actions at age Y.

This is true of X = pot, Y = 18.

Do you wish to add another criteria to exclude pot? What is your justification for these principles?

"Secondly, The quote "alcohol is legal regardless" is taken out of context. It is understood that it is not legal for 18 year olds or this argument would have no purpose."
You were trying to use that fact to ignore the analogy to illegal drugs. i.e. your stated principles would apply to illegal drugs but you just want to confine the question to alcohol.

I was pointing out that if existing legality constrained your debate you couldn't argue about anything since it is currently illegal to drink at 18. Therefore you are talking about what the law should be not what it is, which means you can't use existing law to justify your exclusions (or anything for that matter).

"As a reminder this argument is saying that if there is a drinking age it should be 18. The main reason for this is consistency. 18 year olds are given other rights and responsibilities as an adult, and as an adult they should be allowed to drink."
Just because they are given other rights and responsibilities at a certain age does not logically imply that they should be given more. You are going to have to be more specific. Which responsibilities correlate to which rights, show me that it is inconsistent.

Debate Round No. 4
CUA

Pro

The comparisons used where X and Y are variables does not apply because anything can be replaced in terms of X. The difference between alcohol and pot is that alcohol is legal in all states where pot is not. This argument does not apply to drugs in any sense because they are illegal. Therefore the extra criteria is that alcohol is already legal. If pot were currently legal than the age would be 18 because 18 year olds are recognized adults and it would be consistent, but this is not the case so it does not pertain.
My earlier quote that "alcohol is illegal regardless" was applied to when you stated that "Some might say that you don't have the right to do something that might put other in risk" (round 2). 21 year olds assume that responsibility and once again at 18 you are allowed many rights including the right to own a gun which is a possible.
You stated that you were "pointing out that if existing legality constrained [my] debate [I] couldn't argue about anythings since it is currently illegal to drink at 18." Existing Legality can be used because we are not arguing if alcohol should be legal, but instead who it should be legal to. The inconsistency lies in attaining responsibility. 21 is an arbitrary number in that it is a random number if you were to argue that you should be recognized as an adult at 21 than the drinking age would be 21. It is inconsistent to say that you are an adult at 18 yet not old enough to be able to drink. Do you think it is consistent to say that 18 year olds are adult enough to have the responsibility of serving in the army and owning a gun but are not adult enough to drink alcohol? Show me why it would be consistent.
ADreamOfLiberty

Con

"The comparisons used where X and Y are variables does not apply because anything can be replaced in terms of X."
That's how logic works, from general to specific you establish the form and rule of correct inference and then you apply it to one case.

"The difference between alcohol and pot is that alcohol is legal in all states where pot is not."
Again, not if you're 18. If I added a third criteria 'and is currently legal' then alcohol at 18 wouldn't get you your conclusion.

"This argument does not apply to drugs in any sense because they are illegal"
If you're argument doesn't apply to illegal things then it can't apply to drinking at 18 since that is illegal.

"18 you are allowed many rights including the right to own a gun which is a possible."
It is plausible that on average a gun in the hands of a sober 18 year old is safer than a gun in the hands of a drunk 21 year old.

"Existing Legality can be used because we are not arguing if alcohol should be legal, but instead who it should be legal to."
Who it should be legal to is a subset of whether it should be legal. Saying it should be legal is saying it should be legal to someone at least.

In order to know why it should be legal for 18 year olds you must show why it should be legal for 21 year olds and illustrate why those criteria are also met for 18 year olds.

The criteria you have given so far for why it should be legal for 18 year olds do not constrain the application to alcohol.

"21 is an arbitrary number in that it is a random number"
So is 18, nature does not have a pop-thermometer in people that goes "oooOK this one’s done." You argue that 18 is the age of legal responsibility but that age is just as arbitrary as 21.

"Do you think it is consistent to say that 18 year olds are adult enough to have the responsibility of serving in the army and owning a gun but are not adult enough to drink alcohol?"
The law gives not justification (nor do any laws). The reasons people think they are good or bad are legion. If the law was meant to pick an arbitrary date for a minimum 'adultness' required to drink it wouldn't being consistent.

However there are a lot of people who think of the law in terms of 'social goals' they don't care if it's justified in terms of rights and responsibilities duly owed an individual. To them a three year period of becoming familiar with those rights and responsibilities could be 'training' for more rights and responsibilities. They might say "they need to understand the importance of their legal culpability sober before they can be given the opportunity to risk that culpability by impairing their judgment."

That is why it was very important for you to set out the principles of judging a law in your argument.

"Show me why it would be consistent."
Consistency and inconsistency are undefined without the context of underlying reasons. For instance you set some water to boil, and then you pour a lot of salt in it. Whether these two actions are consistent depends on the reasons. If you want boiling water for tea then it is inconsistent to make it overly salty. If you are trying to cook pasta on the other hand they are consistent.

I tried to ask you what your reasons to make laws about alcohol consumption would be (the whole scope not just for a specific age) so we could evaluate whether it was consistent to make it legal at 21 and illegal at 18 but all you gave me are those two above and I had to parse them out myself.

Given those criteria (1 and 2) it is inconsistent to make alcohol illegal for 21 and legal for 18. However it is also inconsistent to make alcohol legal but not pot. Readers can decide if they accept those criteria and their implications I suppose. (Although if past experience is any guide RFD's will have nothing to do with any of this).

Debate Round No. 5
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by ADreamOfLiberty 3 years ago
ADreamOfLiberty
1) It doesn't matter if it's status quo.

2) wrichcirw is unconvinced.

4) Pointless comments were in style at the time.

5) Not the original statement

6) Delusion

7) Reading comprehension fail.

8) Alcohol (like pot) is ostensibly more 'risky' than other rights.

9) wrichcirw is unconvinced.

"Read my conclusion. I stated what I thought of your "ideal legality" case, relatively weak, unsubstantiated, and rebutted."
You are very good at describing how you were unconvinced, but that's about all.

"Your entire case."
lol Translation: 'facts huh? sources are for facts?'

"Because pot consumption is not status quo legal, as PRO continually stated and you continually ignored."
That continues to be irrelevant. If A implies B it doesn't matter if B is status quo.
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
1) "'specially allowing'"

That's still status quo. As is typical of you, you do not address my point.

2) Accurate but wholly unconvincing.

4) Conceded point by you. Not sure why you bothered to comment.

5) "16 year olds can understand a right to drink alcohol."

Understanding of these individuals is ceteris paribus less than the understanding of someone who actually has those rights and uses/abuses them.

PRO made this point repeatedly, you continually fail to address it.

6) This debate is about legality, not about your personal fantasies.

7) Conceded point by you.

8) The idea is that you need to address PRO's point, that given the basket of rights given at 18, why not alcohol? Pot is irrelevant to this argument. You essentially dropped all of PRO's case.

Read my conclusion. I stated what I thought of your "ideal legality" case, relatively weak, unsubstantiated, and rebutted.

9) Unconvincing.

---

"It seems CON decided to advocate for banning alcohol across the board"
Reading comprehension fail of very large proportions.

No, I do believe that accurately sums up your main rebuttal. It was terrible, IMHO.

---

"I would demand sources"
What facts were in doubt?

Your entire case.

---

"why not alcohol consumption along with them?"
Why not pot consumption along with them?

Because pot consumption is not status quo legal, as PRO continually stated and you continually ignored.

---

Nice rant though. In that sense you do not disappoint.
Posted by ADreamOfLiberty 3 years ago
ADreamOfLiberty
"I look forward to a tirade from CON."
I will try not to disappoint. I am afraid you disappointed me though, it would have made your journey to the dark side complete if you had vote bombed me. Perhaps there is still hope if my tirade is sufficient?

1.) The fact that alcohol is legal is the 'specially allowing' compared to other mind altering drugs. Reading fail.

2.) Con's statement remains perfectly accurate despite whining.

4.) Duh

5.) 16 year olds can understand a right to drink alcohol. Logic fail.

6.) Yes they can, it's just illegal. Just like 18 year olds can drink alcohol it's just illegal.

7.) He made a specific assertion.

8.) Again my small minded little wrichcirw this is about ideal legality. No sane person argues about whether something is illegal when they could just ask a lawyer or consult the law.

9.) but not to a point that was made which itself related to the resolution.

"It seems CON decided to advocate for banning alcohol across the board"
Reading comprehension fail of very large proportions.

"I would demand sources"
What facts were in doubt?

"why not alcohol consumption along with them?"
Why not pot consumption along with them?
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
"Agree, all of PRO's arguments about extra-legal considerations"

all of *CON's* (corrected)

---

I look forward to a tirade from CON.
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
7) CON: "Just because they are given other rights and responsibilities at a certain age does not logically imply that they should be given more. You are going to have to be more specific."

PRO was specific in round #1.

8) PRO: "The difference between alcohol and pot is that alcohol is legal in all states where pot is not."

Agree, all of PRO's arguments about extra-legal considerations ignore the fact that this debate is about legality.

9) CON: "It is plausible that on average a gun in the hands of a sober 18 year old is safer than a gun in the hands of a drunk 21 year old."

Irrelevant to this resolution.

---

CONCLUSION

Against my better judgment, I will score one of CON's debates, since he has finally departed from his obsession with bestiality.

It seems CON decided to advocate for banning alcohol across the board...this requires that he adequately substantiate his position. Although CON made a couple decent points, ultimately I did not find his attempt to be substantive or convincing...the topic requires a lot more analysis than what was presented, and I would demand sources as well for an advocacy of that nature. As it is, given the lack of substantiation by CON, I was convinced by advocacy of moderation by PRO.

PRO's line of reasoning was quite clear, one gets a basket of legal rights, why not alcohol consumption along with them? CON's attempt to frame the debate in an extra-legal framework was unconvincing given the specificity of this resolution to legality.

Arguments to PRO. I am tempted to score S&G to PRO as well due to CON's distracting font changes, but will leave it neutral.
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
1) CON: "Alcohol in context of current law should then be seen as an exception, something that is specially allowed. "

The problem with this line of argumentation is that people can legally drink, so since you're now advocating something contra status quo, BoP is on you to prove that alcohol should be banned across the board. I don't see substantive BoP by CON on this specific point.

2) CON: "Some might say that you don"t have the right to do something that might put others in risk even if it"s only indirectly."

I put others in risk indirectly whenever I walk my dog. My dog poops, and someone could slip on the poop and crack their head on concrete. CON is unconvincing...I still have the right to walk my dog.

3) PRO: "When someone turns 18 they gain a multitude of rights and responsibilities...18 year olds are capable of understanding this moderation and can use alcohol for enjoyable but not necessarily destructive purposes."

PRO's case is quite clear, that people who are held to be legally responsible should enjoy rights held by other legally responsible individuals, such as the use of alcohol.

4) CON: "Ceded, but do you also admit that 16 year olds are also capable of understanding moderation is important?"

But 16 year olds don't have all those rights and responsibilities granted when you turn 18...

5) CON: "16 year olds should be able to take drink if they can answer a moderation questionnaire or something"

The idea I get from PRO is that 16 year olds don't have the rights that an 18 year old has, so does not fully understand the rights they possess...this is wholly different from just having the mental faculties of an 18 year old.

6) CON: "You were trying to use that fact to ignore the analogy to illegal drugs. i.e. your stated principles would apply to illegal drugs but you just want to confine the question to alcohol."

But it does not...people over 21 can't use illegal drugs.
Posted by STALIN 3 years ago
STALIN
Very well.
Posted by ADreamOfLiberty 3 years ago
ADreamOfLiberty
"I don't see why there is a drinking age at all. I'd be ok with no drinking age. In China there isn't a drinking age and they don't seem to be crumbling. Also, in the Netherlands, the drinking age for beer is 16 and hard liquors is 18. And marijuana is de facto legal there, as well. "
Sounds like he could have won your vote simply by admitting drinking ages are arbitrary but they should at least be lower than or equal to the age of majority. Would have worked for me too.
Posted by STALIN 3 years ago
STALIN
"Holy crap, it's a freaken miracle!!!! ADreamOfLiberty has participated in a debate other than bestiality. I don't believe this........"

HAHA, ye we all proud of you ADreamOfLiberty
Posted by ADreamOfLiberty 3 years ago
ADreamOfLiberty
I'd like to hear your description of what the debates about, maybe you think Pro is arguing that alcohol isn't flammable, or maybe that drunks should be paraded around as heroes?
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
CUAADreamOfLibertyTied
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Reasons for voting decision: see comments. Actually, on second thought, I will score this neutral, mainly because I am wary of retributive voting by CON, even though this was a clear PRO win. I'd rather distance myself as far away from him as possible.
Vote Placed by STALIN 3 years ago
STALIN
CUAADreamOfLibertyTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro doesn't really rebute Cons arguments, he simply posts his own. Con does both. Also, I found that Con's arguments were stronger.
Vote Placed by Darris 3 years ago
Darris
CUAADreamOfLibertyTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con pointed out a lot of good flaws in the argument. My favorite was "why 18? why not 10?" (exaggeration). I don't see why there is a drinking age at all. I'd be ok with no drinking age. In China there isn't a drinking age and they don't seem to be crumbling. Also, in the Netherlands, the drinking age for beer is 16 and hard liquors is 18. And marijuana is de facto legal there, as well.