University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Should the Drinking Age Be Lowered to 16
At the moment in Australia the drinking age is 18 and I think that it is time to taking the case of lowering the age into our own hands. Surveys show that nearly 10 million youths aged 12-20 in Australia report that they have consumed alcohol in a 30 day period in 2011. The century council has created a survey, results show that over 55% of teenagers (12-17) said they had been offered or had the opportunity to drink alcohol in the last 12 months. Most teenagers between the ages 12 and 17 had been offered or had the opportunity at a friend’s house or at home from their parents.
Out of these teenagers 40% of them had consumed at least a full serve in that time. The drinking age should be lowered to 16, the parents should get to choose how young or old their child is going to be when they start drinking as long it is a reasonable age and they are responsible for anything that could happen. The parents know when the child is mature enough to start drinking and take on the responsibility, and as parents they know how well their child can cope with alcohol and whether the child should be drinking at whatever age they are. If the drinking age is lowered to 16 the children will have more freedom and be more mature.
If the teens think that they can get the laws to change for drinking at the age of 16, they will think that they can bend all the rules like having drugs and stealing things. I can just imagine a teen getting caught for stealing and saying to the shop keeper: “why can’t I steal? It’s not fair all the rules are being changed and this one hasn’t, I thought it was changed let me go just this once! ” If the 16 year olds are allowed to drink there will be fewer accidents by the time they get to have their full licence or P’s as they would have more experience with alcohol and know what it can do to you.
At the moment when children turn 18 and they can start drinking they can easily be killed from drink driving if they don’t know how strong the alcohol is because they would be new to it. If you started drinking at 16 you would learn to know how strong certain alcohol is and would not be new to it when you have your licence. This would mean there would be fewer crashes and police and Ambulance officers would not have to run from place to place like cheaters chasing after young teens.
Children under the influence of alcohol always act differently to what they usually do, they do not know what they are doing when they are drunk, and they just have fun with their mates and don’t really think what can happen in the long term. They can wake up not knowing what they have done, being frightened hoping nothing bad has happened. Having alcohol at young ages can lead to being an addict or lead to having drugs, if you get caught up with the wrong group and start drinking regularly it can really affect your life and eliminate chances of certain careers and change your attitude a lot.
The children are mature enough and their brains are ready, how would you feel if your parents and people in your life did not think you were mature enough to take on the responsibility of drinking, you would feel pretty upset and not trusted. If you were allowed to drink you would abide by the rules because you would know that you have been given a privilege that not many other teens get and people saying that your brains aren’t ready, what’s going on with that?
Everyone would be different wouldn’t they? Well that’s what most people say, “Everyone is different”. How could you think that the children are ready to drink alcohol, their brains are not ready! At the moment alcohol is poison to the teen brain. If too much or any is consumed it could be fatal, teenagers do not know the risk of drinking so if they are allowed they might have lots of alcohol which could lead to death or major health problems in the future.
According to the information I have collected and read I think that the drinking age should stay 18 as teens are not mature enough to drink at the age of 16 and should be punished if they drink before then. The rule is not made to benefit the rule makers it is to benefit the teens, They made the rule to keep teens safe as alcohol is poison for the teenager’s brain. The rule of not drinking until you are 18 is protecting you from doing stupid things and getting your life mixed up and in danger.