The Instigator
zach12
Pro (for)
Winning
28 Points
The Contender
coldsnypa
Con (against)
Losing
21 Points

The legal drinking age in the United States should be lowered to 18

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 7 votes the winner is...
zach12
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/4/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,142 times Debate No: 6777
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (7)

 

zach12

Pro

I would like to start by stating that I am on the pro side of this argument. The first reason I believe the legal drinking age in the United States of America should be lowered to 18 years of age is that the high drinking age (The United States has the highest drinking age in the world) places too much pressure on colleges and other organizations to enforce it. Kids at a Community College are going to drink in their rooms regardless of regulations. The College simply can't enforce it everywhere. But if a government worker comes to "inspect" the college (I am talking about government funded public colleges) and they find alcohol anywhere on the premises other than in a winery making class there can be penalties.

My second contention concerns the military. If an eighteen year old can go off to risk his life protecting his/her country, why aren't they entitled to have a drink every once in a while?

For my next point I would like to point out that the increase to 21 as the drinking age forces underage drinkers to drink in secret, much like during the National Prohibition. Without parental supervision they abuse and binge drink, and then are more likely to get into a car accident on the way home. However in countries like France and Italy where the drinking age is 16, or in countries like Britain and Australia where it is 18, kids learn moderation in a controlled setting, like a restaurant. Kids in these countries statistically get into a fewer average amount of accidents. Therefore, I think the foolishly high drinking age should be lowered.

I look forward to my opponent's arguments.
coldsnypa

Con

I shall be taking the con side of this debate.

You should realize that the younger the person is, the more immature. My opponent states that kids at a community college will drink regardless of regulation and the college can't do anything about it. Well my friend, they can but they don't try hard enough to enforce anything. And if you were to say that they are trying, well, obviously they are FAILING! If a government work was going to "inspect" the college, then you would think that better laws would be made and/or enforced, so that they would not receive any penalties.

For my second contention, I would like to point out that the military can drink. My opponent states "If an eighteen year old can go off to risk his life protecting his/her country, why aren't they entitled to have a drink every once in a while?" Now here is the thing, they could drink. It is not like someone is going to shoot them if they have a drink underage. And, in fact, they are probably drinking right now. Just because there is that law, doesn't mean that they are going to follow it. So the law will not change.

And finally, my opponent states that the increase to 21 as the drinking age forces underage drinkers to drink in secret. I can GAURENTEE you that they are drinking in secret right now! This law should stay at 21, because almost nothing will change. There will always be underage drinkers and lowering the age will not have as much effect as my opponent thinks it will.

Thank you very much voters. I count on you to make me win! And Thank you Zach12, for a great arguement!
Debate Round No. 1
zach12

Pro

I would like to start by pointing out to my opponent that this debate is not over the topic of whether or not underage people are drinking, which everyone knows they are. Instead this debate is over whether or not the United States should change the drinking age.

As my opponent so tastefully points out, colleges are failing to enforce drinking regulations. I totally agree. But why should they have to spend money on a law that doesn't need to exist in the first place? My opponent also attempts to rebuff my contention about drinking in the military. I said they should be entitled to drink. I never said they didn't drink.

My opponent then goes on to say that if the drinking age was lowered nothing would change. I completely disagree. If the drinking age was lowered to 18, young adults could drink with supervision without fear of discovery and punishment. For example, if an 18 year old is drinking in a restaurant with his parents or even just with friends or alone, there's social moderation. They can't get extremely drunk in front of a whole restaurant. It would be a lot better to learn from parental example than in a frat house.

However if they're drinking in their dorm room, there's no moderating social factor. They can drink however much they want and they often do.

In America, alcohol is an alluring vice, a way to rebel in your own small way. It's a sign of defiance. In Europe it's like drinking a soda, you have one every once in a while and its good, but your not going to binge drink because you know you can have more any time you like.

You're allowed to drink earlier in Europe so you get used to experiences with alcohol earlier, so when you're 18, you're more responsible about it and can take care of yourself and your friends.

Thanks for reading. I urge you to vote pro
coldsnypa

Con

Excuse me, but the topic of whether or not underage people are drinking is still relevant, because of the fact that you want to have the law, having 21 the legal age, transformed to the age of 18. And, in fact, people who are around 18 are officially underage.

And again, colleges are failing to enforce drinking regulations. Who is spending money on this law? My opponent has shown no citation/evidence for this, so it should be scratched off this argument. And my opponent shows weakness because he is agreeing with me. Why should the people in the military be entitled to drink when they are already doing it? There seems no point to lower the age limit to 18. There are many other issues out there such as our economy, so why should we go and make this new law if it is not going to affect much. Basically, this is a waste of time.

I was afraid that you would say that "if the drinking age was lowered nothing would change", but I did not say that. I said ALMOST, not that there would be no change. Of course there is going to be some change, that is a given. Now my opponent says "If the drinking age was lowered to 18, young adults could drink with supervision without fear of discovery and punishment." Alright, then they would not have fear of drinking. But that will lead to them thinking that "Well, since I can drink because I am 18, that must also mean I can gamble, do drugs etc." Thus there will be more drinking and driving. And then, people who are under 18 will think the same thing, that well why cant we have the same rights, but does that mean we have to lower the age limit again because of that? Parental supervision does not have enough effect on almost everyone.

In America, alcohol is addicting. But why is Europe involved? We are talking about laws in the US, so my opponent is trying to seem to have a lot to say, but it is really not relevant, in fact, no relevance at all.

Thanks again voters. I count on you! And again, Thank you Zach12, for a great argument.
Debate Round No. 2
zach12

Pro

http://www2.potsdam.edu...
http://www.underagedrinking.org...

These are some of the websites I used.

This is a quote from: http://www.associatedcontent.com...

"American adults age 18, 19 and 20 can do a number of things legally. For instance they can marry, adopt children, serve on juries, operate businesses, go to prison, be executed, obtain abortions, and engage in legal games of chance (gamble), hunt with deadly weapons, fly airplanes, drive automobiles and other vehicles, purchase or act in pornography, vote, and risk their lives by serving in the United States military. However, they can't legally enjoy a drink! The overview of Prohibition loomed when Americans decided that alcohol consumption was so sacred and powerful that citizens can vote before they can consume alcohol legally. The paradox is astounding but fails to impress American standards."

This sums up my argument perfectly. 18 year olds are treated as adults in all ways except in the field of alcohol consumption. Why is it that you can smoke a cigarette but not drink alcohol, which is not nearly as addictive and is much more socially acceptable?

I would also like to know how stating that men and women in the military should be entitled to drink is agreeing with my opponent.

When my opponent states that if we lower the drinking age to 18 then the 18 year olds will think they deserve additional rights I would not agree. Europe shows a smaller percent of drug addicts and gamblers than here in the United States. And I would also like to point out that 18 year olds can gamble and this law has nothing to do with that.

My reference to European standards on alcohol consumptions is relevant because I'm pointing to a system we could model ours after. I would like to know how my opponent could possibly think looking up to a role model isn't relevant.

Lastly I would like to know what my opponent meant when he said "Excuse me, but the topic of whether or not underage people are drinking is still relevant, because of the fact that you want to have the law, having 21 the legal age, transformed to the age of 18. And, in fact, people who are around 18 are officially underage." I cannot understand this sentence because of all the grammatical errors.

Thanks for reading as always, vote pro.
coldsnypa

Con

coldsnypa forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by coldsnypa 7 years ago
coldsnypa
What I hate is that if I would have looked this debate up, I would have been able to conclude and argue much better...very angry!
Posted by KeithKroeger91 7 years ago
KeithKroeger91
I agree with con but I feel like Con could have argued this much better. Even though I don't agree with Pro he had much better arguments.
Posted by tough1172 8 years ago
tough1172
i totally agree with con. as a teenager, my adrenaline starts to pump when i do something im not suppose to do. but once im allowed to do it, it gets boring over time. who says that this is not the same with alcohol? alcohol isnt so special that everyone is going to get addicted. i would also like to point out that just because teenagers are not adults yet does NOT mean that we are not mature. i would like to say that some teenagers are more mature then some adults. oh, and pro, even though europe, australia, and all the eastern countries are NOT apart of the US, they still are apart of this world. the US is not so great that we can't open our eyes and take example from other countries and see whats working and whats not.
Posted by zach12 8 years ago
zach12
Come on someone other than my opponent and me has to see this and vote on it!
7 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Vote Placed by tough1172 8 years ago
tough1172
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Vote Placed by saamanthagrl 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by TheSexicanMexican 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by Metz 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by CrossXKING 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by zach12 8 years ago
zach12
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Vote Placed by coldsnypa 8 years ago
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