The Instigator
CongressmanDrew
Con (against)
Winning
40 Points
The Contender
Karoz
Pro (for)
Losing
3 Points

The Legal Driving Age SHOULD be raised to 18.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/22/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 10,594 times Debate No: 798
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (10)
Votes (13)

 

CongressmanDrew

Con

Since I am posing a topic that I disagree with, I will wait for a challenger to articulate their opposition to my stance then counter in the latter rounds.
Karoz

Pro

I live in British Columbia where the driving age is 16. I am not sure of the driving age in all of the Provinces/States across North America, so I will assume you disagree with the driving age being moved up from 16 to 18(Correct me if you're talking about moving it up from 14 or whatever. So I know we're on the same page.).

Every year thousands of teenagers DIE in car crashes across North America. That is not counting the massive amount of teenager related car crashes without fatalities, which are insanely high.

Statistics show that people age 16-20 have more car crashes than any other age span. With 16 and 17 year olds at the heavier end. Of course the majority of teenagers involved in car crashes are male, there is also still a high percentage of females as well.

Most teenagers just aren't mature enough to handle driving a car as they tend to treat cars more like toys or video games. Most car crashes could easily be avoided, but are caused by teenagers showing off or down right disregarding the safety of themselves and others because of their "It will never happen to me" mentality.

While only 2 years pass from 16 to 18, most 18 year olds are incredibly more responsible than 16 year olds and are less likely to "goof off" while driving. One of the major reasons is because hormones aren't as rampant in an 18 year old as they are in a 16 year old. It is for this reason and several others that the legal driving age should be bumped up to 18.
Debate Round No. 1
CongressmanDrew

Con

Thank you Karoz for choosing to debate me on this issue. For starters let me say that, yes I believe the legal driving age should be 16.

You stated that the age group of 16-20 account for the most accidents, and that 16 and 17 year olds make up the bulk of those accidents. I believe that to be accurate, however I feel the biggest reason 16 and 17 year olds account for so many accidents is lack of driving experience. If you changed the legal age to 18 and 2 years later compared statistics on vehicle accidents, you would see 18 and 19 year olds accounting for most accidents. Physically, there can be no argument made as to why the driving age should be raised because there are no additional motor skills gained between age 16 to 18.

Karoz, you state that 16 and 17 year olds are more prone to immaturity and that is the cause of accidents. Unfortunately, their is no data or study to back up that assertion. I would argue the opposite. I think 18 and 19 year olds would be more prone to add the element of underage drinking to driving. Not saying 16 and 17 year olds do not drink, but more widely available for 18 to 19 year olds in college.

Finally, here is what I believe to be my strongest argument. Parents. Parents have control of whether or not their children can even attempt to get their license and whether or not their child has access to a vehicle. I feel the best approach is to let the parents decide whether or not their child is adequately prepared for driving at age 16. There is no ultimatum that they must allow their 16 year old child to drive.

Ultimately, I feel no matter what the minimum age there will always be a high rate of collisions among new and inexperienced drivers. Thank you.
Karoz

Pro

I agree that 18 to 20 year old people would still have the most car crashes if the legal driving age was bumped up to 18. However I am almost certain it would still be less than 16 to 17 year olds.

It isn't always because of inexperience that car drivers get into crashes, because you're certainly not going to get your licence until you know how to drive a car correctly.

I'd also like to point out that not all 18 year olds drink, and even a larger percentage don't drink and drive. There may be several that do drink and drive, however these people are the same ones that would get into car crashes regardless.

With less 16 and 17 year olds on the road, I can guarantee the amount of car crashes would be reduced. New drivers are sometimes the most cautious drives, but only if they have enough experience to know driving can be dangerous. 2 years would give them plenty of time to learn new life experiences.

On another note, if 16 and 17 year olds couldn't drive there would be a major reduction in the amount of green house gasses produced, which although it wouldn't stop global warming and pollution it would sure help.
Debate Round No. 2
CongressmanDrew

Con

So you agree that if the legal age limit was raised to 18, 18-19 year olds would account for the most accidents, but still less than 16-17 year olds. Please explain your logic behind that assertion.

Also if the age is raised to 18, who is going to be teaching these young, barely adults how to drive? If they are away in college or moved out in general working full time, how are they going to receive proper driver training. Let me take a stab at what your answer will be. Have the government reach deeper into our pockets by establishing driver training courses at the expense of taxpayers. Solving problems by creating more of them, our government is very good at that.

The fact is the same arguments you make about 16 and 17 year olds acting immature behind the wheel can be applied the same way to 18 and 19 year olds. I know many 16 and 17 year olds that are more mature for their age than 18-20 year olds. The problem is age is not the best precedent to set. Unfortunately, you have to draw a line in the sand somewhere.

Part of the experience of maturing as a teenager is learning how to drive. I would argue by not giving a 16 year old the opportunity to learn to drive, you are depriving that kid the opportunity to mature into the phases of young adulthood. Driving helps give teens a sense of responsibility. They will need this responsibility when they enter adulthood or they will be left behind because they have been pampered their whole life.

If teenage vehicle accidents are such a problem, why don't states make tougher requirements to pass a drivers exam rather than raise the age? Accordingly, I have more faith in the parents across the country rather than the government. I think the parents will do a better job at judging whether or not their child is responsible enough to drive than any level of government.
Karoz

Pro

"So you agree that if the legal age limit was raised to 18, 18-19 year olds would account for the most accidents, but still less than 16-17 year olds."

Yes, but only because there'd be no 16 or 17 year olds driving. I really don't think that needs to be explained.

"Also if the age is raised to 18, who is going to be teaching these young, barely adults how to drive? If they are away in college or moved out in general working full time, how are they going to receive proper driver training."

They'd be learning how to drive until they were 18, because learners licenses would still be available if you were younger. You assume the second you turn 18 you won't be able to find a driving instructor, or you will suddenly be whisked away to college! Most 18 year olds have a few months after they turn 18 before they actually go to college, that is if they even go to college.

"Let me take a stab at what your answer will be. Have the government reach deeper into our pockets by establishing driver training courses at the expense of taxpayers. Solving problems by creating more of them, our government is very good at that."

As it stands now, they can learn how to drive the exact same way they learn how to drive now. I don't recall driving lessons to be free either, so why would taxpayers pay for that?

"I know many 16 and 17 year olds that are more mature for their age than 18-20 year olds."

.. and I know 13 year olds that are more mature than 30 year olds. Your point? Even if you know people more mature, that doesn't change the fact that the MAJORITY aren't. It isn't the small amount of mature people that cause the crashes after all.

"Part of the experience of maturing as a teenager is learning how to drive. I would argue by not giving a 16 year old the opportunity to learn to drive, you are depriving that kid the opportunity to mature into the phases of young adulthood. Driving helps give teens a sense of responsibility. They will need this responsibility when they enter adulthood or they will be left behind because they have been pampered their whole life. "

So now you're saying I'm not responsible? I did NOT learn how to drive when I was a teenager. So does that suddenly make me unresponsible? Also, how does parents buying their children a car = not being pampered?

Also you seem to continuously forget about learners licenses. I am not suggesting bumping up the age of learners licenses, only the age of drivers licenses.

"If teenage vehicle accidents are such a problem, why don't states make tougher requirements to pass a drivers exam rather than raise the age? Accordingly, I have more faith in the parents across the country rather than the government. I think the parents will do a better job at judging whether or not their child is responsible enough to drive than any level of government."

My argument has had nothing to do with a teenagers skill at driving.

Also, I would prefer it if you kept this debate more neutral. You seem to constantly revert back to discussing the United States Government, while I have tried to generalize as the entire North American continent. I made it clear from the beginning that I'm not American.
Debate Round No. 3
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by blondesrule502 9 years ago
blondesrule502
My state's permit age is 15 and we don't have many auto accidents compared to other states.
Posted by blondesrule502 9 years ago
blondesrule502
I live in a rural area and teens need to be able to drive because some have a one hour commute to high school, which can be way out of their parents' way. It would be inconvenient and ruin many middle class families.
Posted by gonovice 9 years ago
gonovice
kels, i'm in drivers ed. and i have to get 50 hours in three weeks. that isn't that much time. i spend about 4 days a week in class and it lasts about an hour and a half. i agree with sammerz.
Posted by sammerz08 9 years ago
sammerz08
16 year olds are the only ones that actually remember everything they teach you in driving school. As you get more experienced you think you know what you're doing, so you start paying attention less..
Posted by kels1123 9 years ago
kels1123
If you read my comment , I said it wasn't about age , it was about experience. Yes some experienced drivers are not good drivers , however in most cases it is an inexperienced driver that is in an accident. That is why I think we should keep the age but have more hours and learning before being able to get your DL.
Posted by gonovice 9 years ago
gonovice
kels, people who are 80 are experienced and they are not always the safest drivers. some people who are 27 or 28 are not good drivers and they are "experienced". age has nothing to do with it. it's all a matter of how you are on the road. keep in mind that at every age there will be a bad driver, so age really is not a factor in someones driving capabilities.
Posted by kels1123 9 years ago
kels1123
sammerz , 16 year old drivers are not the safest drivers on the road , experienced drivers are the safest drivers on the road. That is why rather than higher the age , we need to have more driving hours being completed, before one gets their license. Its not age , its experience.
Posted by arrivaltime 9 years ago
arrivaltime
Whats the basis for the argument that 18 year olds would not crash AS MUCH as the 16 year olds? I mean you state it like its fact but how do you know?
Posted by sammerz08 9 years ago
sammerz08
16 year olds are the safest drivers on the roads.
Posted by jlholtzapple 9 years ago
jlholtzapple
congressmandrew, I fully agree whith you, mabey most teenagers age 16 or 17 cause most accendents, but thats because they are new drivers and even if you moved the age to 18 they will still be new drivers and then most of the accedents will be caused by them.
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