They have to be joking?

I have been meaning to comment on this issue for the past week, but have not had time.

Some New York Colleges have started a debate in the hope of reducing the legal drinking age, as they believe it will cut underage drinking. Alot of comentators think they're either crazy, or just want to cut the burden on themselves of policing it!

Now us Brit's speak from a wealth of knowledge and experience on this issue, as our legal drinking age has been 18 for as long as I can remember. We currently have the worst reputation in Europe and a HUGE national problem with underage drinking and binging. To add to the problem, a few years ago the licensing hours when pubs and bars can be open were lengthened too.

Every weekend there are horrendous pictures online and in the press of the British youth having about 10 drinks too many. They are pictured lying in the streets comatose, fighting, brawling and being generally obnoxious. Whole areas of many towns have become a 'no go' for the general public because of these drunken out of control youths. Even worse, the problem seems especially bad amongst young women for some reason.

Many of them are still underage, or have older friends buying their alcohol and it's not uncommon for 14-15 year olds to be drunk in public. It is a national disgrace and placing a huge burden on our already overloaded Police force. The problem has become so bad the government now has an appointed 'think tank' looking into it.

So NO this will definitely not help the colleges control underage drinking. It will just result in even younger people consuming alcohol and an escalation of the minor problems you currently have, when compared to us. The board members of these colleges should be sent on a fact finding mission to England. Learn by our experience and 'just say no' if this ever gets to legislation!


Dee/reddirtramblings said...

Amen Sistah! The legal drinking age for 3.2 beer in Oklahoma was 18 when I was a teen. I'm glad it was changed to 21. This is not a good idea. Adults don't always make good decisions concerning alcohol consumption, and teens never do (once they've started drinking.)~~Dee

Daryl said...

I dont know many college age 'kids' but I do know that when I was in college there was the same push .. and it got squashed. Every so often this issue gets revisited and the same agruments are given .. you can vote and drive a car at 18 but you cant drink til you're 21 .. ummm .. seems right to me ... there are enough drunks driving w/o adding to their ranks.

Thanks for the post, Sarah, its a good reminder/food for thought!


Rhea said...

I didn't realize the drinking age was 18 in England. I really appreciated hearing your view on the subject. It sounds awful over there and out of control. I don't think lowering the drinking age is going to help things here, especially after reading your post!

willow said...

That is ridiculous!!

Sandi McBride said...

We'll hear a lot of "old enough to go to war but to young to drink" and I say, well, if they're at war they need their wits about them, right? We don't drink and were barely social drinkers...unless gingerale gets hard that's been our limit...I drank a beer once at a pizza hut in front of my kids and got accused of being an alcoholic (by them) so that's been about it...we don't do drugs, stopped smoking...just boring old farts, I guess. But our minds are clear and so are our lungs, lol! Great post, thanks for taking a stand Sarah! I'm with you!\hugs

pamokc said...

I have to disagree with you on this one and will relate it back to Viet Nam, of all things. I remember when the talk started to lower the voting age to 18 on the theory that if you are old enough to go to war, you should be old enough to vote. I feel the same about the drinking age.

In two counties in OK back in the 70s, both college towns, girls could drink beer at 18 but boys couldn't until age 21. Now how discriminatory is that?

So maybe the answer is to raise the age to join the military to age 21 as well! Hmmmm.

Mary said...

The legal drinking age in my state in the mid 70s was 18 for any alcohol. I think it changed to 21 just after I turned 21. I see no good reason to go back to 18.

Mare said...

I agree with you. None of the ones who are saying 'old enough to go to war...' aren't at war.
Alcohol causes so many problems, especially with young drinkers. Often life changing effects.

Mare said...

Oops...typo...I meant 'are' at war.

Mare said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Janet said...

I have to say I disagree with you on this. If people are considered to be adults at age 18 they should have the freedom to make their own choices.

Brit' Gal Sarah said...

Let me re-iterate that my point here was not the current drinking age - but whether lowering it will reduce underage drinking.

"So NO this will definitely not help the colleges control underage drinking."