18-year-olds can get drafted into the military, fight and witness a bloody war…but legally can’t crack a cold one with the boys.
As young adults, we are granted a multitude of new rights and freedoms at the very moment that we turn 18. Suddenly, under the eye of the law, we are seen, and very much treated, as adults.
However, despite having all these new ‘adult responsibilities and privileges’ 18-year-olds are not allowed to consume alcohol.
These are a few of the many things you can do at the age of 18:
You can become emancipated
You can enlist in the military
You will be charged as an adult for any committed crimes
You can film porn
You can register to vote
You can adopt a child (If certain requirements are met)
The above list goes to show how under the eye of the law, we are trusted and believed to be able to comply with these opportunities and responsibilities without any issues. After all, we are adults, right?
To put things into a deeper perspective, as a young 18-year-old adult, we can reveal ourselves and our body to the internet in a sexually explicit manner and it will be legal.
If an 18-year-old can prove to be financially stable and prove they can manage a household, they are able to adopt a child. They are capable of starting a family and living on their own while working a full time job.
Somehow when alcohol comes into question, 18-year-olds are suddenly no longer an adult.
In Wisconsin, a bill is moving along to lower the legal drinking age to 19 in hopes to decrease the already heavy drinking of teens.
One of the representatives that proposed this bill, Republican Rep. Adam Jarchow says, “countless hours and hundreds of thousands of dollars” will be saved from not having to reinforce the law of underage drinking.
Additionally, it will encourage teens to drink less vigorously, according to a research conducted by USA Today.
Contrary to this belief, many people will argue that lowering the drinking age would just fuel the drinking and driving issue and encourage the younger adults to consume more alcohol irresponsibly.
“If you prohibit people to doing something until they are 21, the natural inclination is to be a little bit rebellious when they’re young, (and) then to overindulge,” Jarchow said.
At the end of the day, underage drinking is practically inevitable. Yes, we have laws to reinforce what we can and cannot do. However, laws will not stop everyone.
Palomar College Professor and mother of two, Adelina Hernandez says, “no matter what the legal drinking age is, if a person has decided they will drink, they will do it regardless of the law.”
Putting her motherly perspective into mind, “what’s more important, in my opinion, is that the person understands the risks and consequences of drinking,” Hernandez said. “Some adults aren’t even capable of that, it all comes down to taking responsibility.”
If an 18-year-old can be sent to fight and kill in war, they should rightfully be able have a drink.
- MBR: Eugene H. Louie/NC WEB BL/MCT | Used With Permission