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Editorial: U.S. Drinking Age Limit Should Be Lowered

This story was written by , The Daily Athenaeum

The national drinking age should drop back down to 18.

According to anAP article, presidents of 100 well-known colleges and universities are rallying together to ask lawmakers to reconsider the drinking age.

John McCardell is the brave president emeritus from Middlebury College in Vermont who started the Amethyst Initiative the group which recruits these presidents to sign a statement for reconsideration of the drinking age.

The National Minimum Drinking Age Act that raised the drinking age from 18 to 21 came about because of a federal highway law threatening to cut states highway dollars if the drinking age wasnt changed.

So for 24 years, a number of college students have been drinking illegally. And despite our Universitys wishes, it happens on this campus.

As Princeton Reviews No. 1 Party School last year, West Virginia Universitys students of legal age certainly werent the only ones who garnered that type of attention.

The oldest argument in the book still holds true today if you can fight for your country at 18, why shouldnt you be able to have a drink?

I believe that 18-year-old adults in our culture are capable of voting, signing contracts, marrying, paying taxes, serving in the military and assuming other adult endeavors including the right to drink responsibly, wrote Donald R. Eastman III, Eckerd College president, on the Amethyst Initiative Web site.

But, not everyone is a fan of their initiative. Mothers Against Drunk Driving, or MADD, is speaking out against it.

They think the institution presidents action will actually lead to more fatal car crashes. The AP article also states the group accuses the presidents of misrepresenting science and looking for an easy way out of an inconvenient problem.

What is most important to realize about these presidents decision is its not done to encourage drinking at a younger age. Its promoting responsible drinking.

With the drinking age as high as it is, many disregard the fact that its a privilege and a responsibility, and do it in a careless manner.

According to the AP article, 500,000 college students suffer injuries from drinking-related incidents each year. About 1,700 die in these accidents.

And, it was also found in a recent AP analysis that 157 people aged 18 to 23 drank themselves to death in a six-year period.

If the drinking age is lowered, soon-to-be college students need to be educated on the repercussions. With those three years, students could become more comfortable and develop a more responsible attitude towards alcohol.