UNDER the Influence

Emma Stevenson, Writer

There has been uproar about lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18. American children have decided that they need alcohol at a quicker point in life. Like many other laws that have been established in the United States, the standard of citizens being 21 years of age before one can be in legal possession and use of alcohol has been argued and debated upon. Now more than ever, people are campaigning for lowering the drinking age to 18. 

Alcohol can be extremely harmful and children below the age or twenty-one are not mature enough to handle such substances.  

According to drugabusestatistics.org in Texas alone in 2020, there were 1,439 drunk driving fatalities, 155 of which are under the age of 21. This number is more than any other specific age group. People under the age of 21 have already proved that they cannot handle these substances. Teens are already dying because of their inability to make good decisions. We should not give them more opportunities to kill themselves. 

The average human’s frontal lobe is not developed until the age of twenty-one. Alcohol interferes with the brain’s communication pathways and can affect the way the brain looks and works. So, if children are allowed to drink alcohol, then their brains will not develop correctly. The potential for brain damage should be a big enough reason to halt drinking alcohol at a young age but this just is not so.  

18-year-olds have already proven they do not know how to handle alcohol correctly. If the government gives them this privilege they will be more irresponsible and get themselves and others hurt. If the government gives children unnecessary privileges the kids will take them and run way farther than anyone intended for them to.  

Yes, 18-year-olds have the ability to do many things, but they do not need all the privileges adults have. Drinking is a huge responsibility that 18-year-olds are not mature enough to handle.  

The government should not lower the legal drinking age. 18-year-olds are not responsible enough to drink alcohol, they have already proven this. To keep our country safe we must keep the legal age to consume alcohol at 21 or we can expect to live in a death filled frenzy because of unnecessary rights.