The drinks can wait; keeping the drinking age 21

Graphic+by+Austin+Troy+Banzon

Graphic by Austin Troy Banzon

Gabby Sahm , Staff Writer

High school is a place where teenagers discover themselves. They try to gain knowledge about what the “real world” is like once they are forced to leave the nest and embark on their college journey.

 

It is full of laughs, tears and pride once you finally walk across the stage to receive your diploma.

 

High school can be tough and you can be thrown down paths that can lead to severe consequences.

 

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the pressure to drink underage and experiment with drugs is growing more and more with every generation but no one seems to care. Many teenagers do not understand that underage drinking can lead to many different illnesses like alcoholism and depression.

 

Since this is happening, it may be hard to see why many teenagers and adults are starting to believe that the drinking age should be lowered from the age of 21 to the age of 18. Cases of alcohol poisoning caused by hazing and other activities are becoming more common among colleges. People believe that if the drinking age is lowered then teenagers will have less incentive to drink because it wouldn’t be illegal for them to do it anymore.

 

Another main reasons that people believe that the drinking age should be lowered is because 18 is the legal age of adulthood in the United States, so they believe it should be the legal drinking age as well.

 

Both of these points are discussed in the Amethyst Initiative Argument and resulted in the making of the Amethyst Initiative. This is an act that 135 colleges and universities have signed to start the debate over whether the legal drinking age should be lowered. I recently just discovered this argument and I was very surprised to see how many colleges and universities stand.

 

What they are failing to see it that alcohol being illegal for anyone under the age of 21 is not the only reason teenagers are doing it and the consequences of lowering the drinking age seem to far outweigh the benefits.

 

Teenagers brains are still developing so drinking alcohol stunts that growth and in many cases cause mental or physical harm. Teens are dealing with some many other challenges and obstacles in their life and making alcohol more available for them will only cause more trouble.

 

Being a teenager in high school and on my way to college in four months, I have experienced the pressure to drink underage. I feel that almost every high school student has or will at one point. Lowering the drinking age will not change this.

 

It will put more pressure because some students still might not feel comfortable drinking but since it will be legal they will be isolated even more. For the students that do not drink based on their religious beliefs and other who still do not feel the need to drink, it will be harder for them to hang around other teenagers who will be constantly drinking once it is legalized.

 

Keeping the drinking 21 is the best option for everyone. It will keep teenagers safe and will stop most from drinking more if the age was to be lowered. We should not enable teenagers or equip them with more ways to harm themselves.