Old enough to die for your country, old enough to drink?

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  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited March 2009
    moniker wrote: »
    ~83% of the US population lives in what the Census considers to be a metropolitan area. ~54% in a metropolitan area of greater than 1 million. I believe it requires a population in the 'urban core' of 50,000 people.
    Yeah, I kind of expected something like that. You only need to crack about 100,000 people in an urbanised area before a bus service becomes easily viable, going by my 5 minute survey of Queensland towns. I'd suggest that the threshold would be lower if we weren't so in love with sprawl, and I know the US on average doesn't sprawl as much as Australia.

    I get the feeling even 'rural' towns in the US are probably a bit larger than Aussie ones. I mean, I'm talking "grid of 4 by 4 streets roughly a kilometre across, with a pub in the middle and a footy field on one side" as the standard for rural hubs around here.

    The Cat on
    tmsig.jpg
  • DuffelDuffel jacobkosh Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Terrain is as important as population density when you're talking about public transit in rural areas. When I was in grade school I lived maybe ~5 miles from where I went to school, and getting to school in the morning (when I got a ride from my parents) took about 15 mins.

    Getting home, on the other hand, took nearly two hours. Granted, I was pretty much the last kid on the bus to get off, but it wasn't unusual at all for me to get out of school a little after 2 and get home at about 3:50 or 4. The roads are horribly laid out - all these crazy little paths up and around hills, some of them not even real two-lane roads, stuff like that - it's almost like an ant farm or something. I can't imagine for the life of me how public transit could function in an area like that, and your neighbors usually aren't the sort of people you want to carpool with.

    Duffel on
  • TastyfishTastyfish Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    The Cat wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    ~83% of the US population lives in what the Census considers to be a metropolitan area. ~54% in a metropolitan area of greater than 1 million. I believe it requires a population in the 'urban core' of 50,000 people.
    Yeah, I kind of expected something like that. You only need to crack about 100,000 people in an urbanised area before a bus service becomes easily viable, going by my 5 minute survey of Queensland towns. I'd suggest that the threshold would be lower if we weren't so in love with sprawl, and I know the US on average doesn't sprawl as much as Australia.

    I get the feeling even 'rural' towns in the US are probably a bit larger than Aussie ones. I mean, I'm talking "grid of 4 by 4 streets roughly a kilometre across, with a pub in the middle and a footy field on one side" as the standard for rural hubs around here.

    I think a lot of people seem to have an absurdly idealised version of public transport in Europe as well. It might be possible to get where you want, but not necessarily practical for working.

    Tastyfish on
  • EvanderEvander Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    I say get rid of the drinking age.

    Maybe, just maybe, drinking wouldnt be this huge passage of right were a bunch of moron kids go out and binge drink and die. Then we wouldnt have to hear about how these dumbasses killed themselves on the news and how we should all feel sorry for a moron who drank himself to death.

    So basically, what you're saying is that if kids are allowed to drink at any age, by the time they reach driving age it won't be "WOOOOOOO just drank 40 beers cause I'm cool like that! Now let's Go Drive!"?

    I find this plausible.

    I think it is more than plausable.

    Right now we hand childrent he keys to multi-ton death traps, and let them run wild. We give them five years, which at that young of an age is an eternity. After five years they think they are all experts. Then you introduce them to alcohol. They're thinking they already know all that there is to this driving thing, and a "small" ammount of imparement won't make any difference to an expert like them.



    Personally, I'm infavor of lowering the drinking age, and raising the driving age up higher.

    Evander on
  • EvanderEvander Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    redx wrote: »
    Medopine wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    redx wrote: »
    Isn't forcing new inexperienced irresponsible drinkers to drive somewhere to drink kinda not good.

    Which is why I'd prefer the drinking age be lower than the driving age so as to let people learn how to hold their liquor before they can hold the steering wheel of several tons of steel moving at speed.

    Though the easier solution for this would actually be improved zoning laws and expanded public transit. There's no real reason for places that serve alcohol to be at the outskirts of a town and not easily accessible by bus. Especially after last call. Designated drivers are always a good idea, but a designated stumble in the right direction/bus schedule reader is better.

    have you been to rural america?

    there's lots of it

    So you are saying we should lower the voting age down below the drive age as well?

    I'd argue for it, honestly.

    I've been working, and as a result paying taxes, since I was 14. As a result of that, I spent 4 years dealing with taxation without representation.

    Evander on
  • LRGLRG Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Feral wrote: »
    LRG wrote: »
    Res wrote: »
    LRG wrote: »
    Res wrote: »
    Zek wrote: »
    Drinking and dying for your country are two completely unrelated things and comparing them is an asinine argument.

    It is. If "dying for your country" or any variant thereof is included in an argument you can usually expect it to be asinine.

    A better argument is this: can you say that all people in a certain age group (18-21) are overwhelmingly not mature enough to handle alcohol safely but are mature enough to carry the American flag into another country, into battle, handling a rifle, or a plane, or a tank, or casualties, and follow orders (relatively) safely and correctly and professionally, without compromising the country's mission or causing collateral damage or any other of a very large number of disasters that can easily result from being put in such a position?


    Well, "personal freedom" and "Fighting for one's country" do have very little to do with each other.


    ...No, they have everything to do with each other. The reason we don't let 18-year-olds drink is also much of the reason we don't let 15-year-olds fight wars: their inability, or perceived inability, to do so safely.


    One has to do with following orders and the other has to do with being able to do what you want. They are different from each other and no wonder.

    We don't let 15 year old go to war inhumane/immoral to train 15 year olds to kill for the military, "safety" has little to do with it. The difference between 18 year old drinking and 21 year old drinking is not a moral issue.

    When considering safety, I think we can agree that unsupervised underage binge drinking is way, way, less safe than 18 year olds being able to drink in bars and openly, while being under the same scrutiny from peers and the law about not being a drunk asshole in public.

    Why is it immoral or inhumane to train a 15 year old to kill for the military?

    If the 15 year old wants to do it, why not let them?

    (I have my own answer to this question but I want to know yours.)


    Something strikes me as very morally wrong about the idea of 15 year old killing on command for the military.


    unless they're Bucky Barnes, then it's awesome.

    LRG on
  • Anarchy Rules!Anarchy Rules! Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    I've been drinking since about I was 14-15, and so at that age you are almost certainly living with parents, so they teach you to drink in moderation. The the UK it's legal for anyone over the age of 5 to drink in private, and 16+ to drink with a meal. This is meant to encourage people to get used to alcohol in a familial setting where they are safe.

    To further the point, in my 6th form (16-18yrs) parties were organised at a local sports club, pretty much everyone was underage, and the teachers, police and parents knew about it, but viewed them as a necessary evil. My parents preferred me to get drunk out my skull here, where they knew where I was, and they could make sure I ok, learn my limits (and my lesson!), rather than get drunk at university when I could legally drink, but not necessarily have people around me who are sober enough to look after you.

    Also, regarding public transport issues in Europe: they are not 24hour services! In most towns and cities night buses only run on fridays and saturdays, and usually not to anywhere you want to go. Cabs are just as essential after a night out as anywhere in america.

    Anarchy Rules! on
  • MedopineMedopine __BANNED USERS regular
    edited March 2009
    The Cat wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    ~83% of the US population lives in what the Census considers to be a metropolitan area. ~54% in a metropolitan area of greater than 1 million. I believe it requires a population in the 'urban core' of 50,000 people.
    Yeah, I kind of expected something like that. You only need to crack about 100,000 people in an urbanised area before a bus service becomes easily viable, going by my 5 minute survey of Queensland towns. I'd suggest that the threshold would be lower if we weren't so in love with sprawl, and I know the US on average doesn't sprawl as much as Australia.

    I get the feeling even 'rural' towns in the US are probably a bit larger than Aussie ones. I mean, I'm talking "grid of 4 by 4 streets roughly a kilometre across, with a pub in the middle and a footy field on one side" as the standard for rural hubs around here.

    there are plenty of those in the US, without the footie field though :P

    the county I work for has 40,000 people total in it, I think, in about 992 square miles

    cabs and DD's are the way to get home safely, pretty much

    Medopine on
  • zakkielzakkiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    Which doesn't really solve anything and is just a legally dubious as the current setup. You're old enough to be considered a legal adult with all the rights and responsibilities that entails, except when it comes to liquor. You foolish child.


    I also hate that you can't rent a car until you turn 25. Pay out the ass for insurance fees? I can understand that, but I'm 18. Legally I can run a car rental company. And yet you won't let me take out your shitty Ford.

    I guess I just don't find that a terribly compelling argument. All the things you're allowed to do at 18 have no bearing on what you should be allowed to do at 18.

    Except that 18 has become the determined age for legal adulthood. If you want to shift all of that up to 21 as well or ban alcohol altogether then at the very least you aren't being hypocritical, but otherwise there is no sound basis for preventing adults from making personal decisions on legally allowed substances.
    Right, because the only consistent position is to believe that there is a single age at which you should receive all rights. Believing that different rights should be acquired at different times is hypocritical.

    I still don't understand why this isn't a silly argument.
    The difference between what I'm suggesting and the status quo is that it's enforceable. College students can drink, relieving administrators from the burden of enforcing an impossible rule, but high school seniors won't be able to buy alcohol for sophomores.

    Yes, but you are basically taking the tack that the problem is with issues over enforcement rather than the very basis of the prohibition itself.
    Yes, but not in the sense you mean. I don't think it should be illegal for 18 year olds to drink. I also don't think 15-year-old kids should be binge drinking as they do in Russia, Britain, Australia, and Canada, and as was often the case here before the federal drinking age. I think if you make it legal for 18-year-olds to purchase alcohol without restrictions we are likely to find the college drinking culture moving back to high school. As we've already seen, making it illegal does not make it enforceable.

    zakkiel on
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  • ScalfinScalfin __BANNED USERS regular
    edited March 2009
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    Which doesn't really solve anything and is just a legally dubious as the current setup. You're old enough to be considered a legal adult with all the rights and responsibilities that entails, except when it comes to liquor. You foolish child.


    I also hate that you can't rent a car until you turn 25. Pay out the ass for insurance fees? I can understand that, but I'm 18. Legally I can run a car rental company. And yet you won't let me take out your shitty Ford.

    I guess I just don't find that a terribly compelling argument. All the things you're allowed to do at 18 have no bearing on what you should be allowed to do at 18.

    Except that 18 has become the determined age for legal adulthood. If you want to shift all of that up to 21 as well or ban alcohol altogether then at the very least you aren't being hypocritical, but otherwise there is no sound basis for preventing adults from making personal decisions on legally allowed substances.
    Right, because the only consistent position is to believe that there is a single age at which you should receive all rights. Believing that different rights should be acquired at different times is hypocritical.

    I still don't understand why this isn't a silly argument.

    Because saying that a person is old enough to have autonomy but really isn't is contradictory.

    Scalfin on
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  • zakkielzakkiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Scalfin wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    Which doesn't really solve anything and is just a legally dubious as the current setup. You're old enough to be considered a legal adult with all the rights and responsibilities that entails, except when it comes to liquor. You foolish child.


    I also hate that you can't rent a car until you turn 25. Pay out the ass for insurance fees? I can understand that, but I'm 18. Legally I can run a car rental company. And yet you won't let me take out your shitty Ford.

    I guess I just don't find that a terribly compelling argument. All the things you're allowed to do at 18 have no bearing on what you should be allowed to do at 18.

    Except that 18 has become the determined age for legal adulthood. If you want to shift all of that up to 21 as well or ban alcohol altogether then at the very least you aren't being hypocritical, but otherwise there is no sound basis for preventing adults from making personal decisions on legally allowed substances.
    Right, because the only consistent position is to believe that there is a single age at which you should receive all rights. Believing that different rights should be acquired at different times is hypocritical.

    I still don't understand why this isn't a silly argument.

    Because saying that a person is old enough to have autonomy but really isn't is contradictory.

    Which is why one would say a person is old enough to have autonomy in x but not in y. For example, old enough to work but not old enough to vote, old enough to drive but not to own a company. You see? Childhood and adulthood are useful constructs not absolute categories. Biologically you do not reach a certain age and suddenly flip to adulthood, and there's no reason laws should work like that either.

    zakkiel on
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  • ScalfinScalfin __BANNED USERS regular
    edited March 2009
    zakkiel wrote: »
    Scalfin wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    Which doesn't really solve anything and is just a legally dubious as the current setup. You're old enough to be considered a legal adult with all the rights and responsibilities that entails, except when it comes to liquor. You foolish child.


    I also hate that you can't rent a car until you turn 25. Pay out the ass for insurance fees? I can understand that, but I'm 18. Legally I can run a car rental company. And yet you won't let me take out your shitty Ford.

    I guess I just don't find that a terribly compelling argument. All the things you're allowed to do at 18 have no bearing on what you should be allowed to do at 18.

    Except that 18 has become the determined age for legal adulthood. If you want to shift all of that up to 21 as well or ban alcohol altogether then at the very least you aren't being hypocritical, but otherwise there is no sound basis for preventing adults from making personal decisions on legally allowed substances.
    Right, because the only consistent position is to believe that there is a single age at which you should receive all rights. Believing that different rights should be acquired at different times is hypocritical.

    I still don't understand why this isn't a silly argument.

    Because saying that a person is old enough to have autonomy but really isn't is contradictory.

    Which is why one would say a person is old enough to have autonomy in x but not in y. For example, old enough to work but not old enough to vote, old enough to drive but not to own a company. You see? Childhood and adulthood are useful constructs not absolute categories. Biologically you do not reach a certain age and suddenly flip to adulthood, and there's no reason laws should work like that either.

    Actually, if you look at the way punishments are meted out for drivers under 18, driving appears to be handled as more of a priveledge for minors, but that's beside the point. The point is that, in the eyes of the law, you are your own person, fully responsible for your own choices and free to choose as you wish. That is directly in opposition to the thought behind drinking laws.

    Scalfin on
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  • zakkielzakkiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Scalfin wrote: »

    Actually, if you look at the way punishments are meted out for drivers under 18, driving appears to be handled as more of a priveledge for minors, but that's beside the point. The point is that, in the eyes of the law, you are your own person, fully responsible for your own choices and free to choose as you wish. That is directly in opposition to the thought behind drinking laws.
    So clearly then you aren't free to do as you wish in the eyes of the law.

    zakkiel on
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  • ScalfinScalfin __BANNED USERS regular
    edited March 2009
    zakkiel wrote: »
    Scalfin wrote: »

    Actually, if you look at the way punishments are meted out for drivers under 18, driving appears to be handled as more of a priveledge for minors, but that's beside the point. The point is that, in the eyes of the law, you are your own person, fully responsible for your own choices and free to choose as you wish. That is directly in opposition to the thought behind drinking laws.
    So clearly then you aren't free to do as you wish in the eyes of the law.

    Does that mean NSA searches disprove the existence of FISA court?

    Scalfin on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
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  • zakkielzakkiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Scalfin wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    Scalfin wrote: »

    Actually, if you look at the way punishments are meted out for drivers under 18, driving appears to be handled as more of a priveledge for minors, but that's beside the point. The point is that, in the eyes of the law, you are your own person, fully responsible for your own choices and free to choose as you wish. That is directly in opposition to the thought behind drinking laws.
    So clearly then you aren't free to do as you wish in the eyes of the law.

    Does that mean NSA searches disprove the existence of FISA court?

    Is the NSA part of the legislative branch?

    zakkiel on
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  • animaleanimale Registered User
    edited March 2009
    When I was younger I was able to drink at clubs and such just by showing my military ID. Of course that varied from venue to venue.

    I saw people get in lots of trouble for underage drinking, I mean it was mostly glossed over in the dorms and the like since most of the military popo I knew participated in it, but when people got caught drunk driving they got crucified. During my last month of active duty I was out partying in Denver and I got a call around midnight to come back to base since someone got caught drunk driving while underaged, I guess it had been the second incident that week so the base commander decided to punish pretty much everyone who lived in the dormitories or who had airmen in the dorms by making them several miles at night in their BDUs... I actually offered to go back to the base if they could send someone to pick me up, I was an hour away so they declined. Hooray for being a responsible drunk, eh?

    A week later there was another DUI, so I had to do Saturday morning PT and such, which annoyed me especially since I was counting the days until I was out.

    I also saw a few people get in trouble in Afghanistan for drinking, US forces aren't allowed to drink but the Europeans we were stationed with were, people would go away for some time and they'd come back with a lower rank. A friend of mine was a chaplain's assistant and he pretty much had access to the only alcohol on my camp, he along with my roommate snuck some wine away, poured it in empty water bottles and we had ourselves a fun night. Was it wrong? Yes. Did we care? No. We were celebrating my roommate's birthday, it was good times.

    Anyway, moral of the story is, don't get caught.

    animale on
  • FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD along with you if I get drunk well I know I'm gonna be gonna be the man whoRegistered User regular
    edited March 2009
    LRG wrote: »
    Something strikes me as very morally wrong about the idea of 15 year old killing on command for the military.

    With all respect, I submit that your position is not well-examined enough to be worth debate.

    Feral on
    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
  • AlectharAlecthar Alan Shore We're not territorial about that sort of thing, are we?Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Oh, drinking age, you suck so hard...

    I lived in Germany while I was in high school, and off base the legal drinking age is 16 (for non-distilled drinks). The driving age, however, is 18. It seems to me to be crazy as hell that we let our young people drive before we let them drink.

    18 is a big marker here, it's legal majority, you can vote, do all kinds of fun adult stuff. By which I mean responsibility. If you're male, you're now ready for a draft. You can join the military. Everything except for drinking.

    Alecthar on
  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    zakkiel wrote: »
    Scalfin wrote: »

    Actually, if you look at the way punishments are meted out for drivers under 18, driving appears to be handled as more of a priveledge for minors, but that's beside the point. The point is that, in the eyes of the law, you are your own person, fully responsible for your own choices and free to choose as you wish. That is directly in opposition to the thought behind drinking laws.
    So clearly then you aren't free to do as you wish in the eyes of the law.

    Which is why the law is unfair, foolish, and unconscionable. You are free, and actually required in some circumstances, to make far more difficult and dangerous decisions on every subject imaginable, except for whether or not you'd like white wine with fish. It's a senseless prohibition that only exists because 'think of the children' has no limit.

    moniker on
  • DuffelDuffel jacobkosh Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Has anybody posted stats from dui/drunk driving/alcohol poisoning fatalities before and after it was bumped up to 21?

    Personally, I think the 21-age-limit is ridiculous. It's obviously done sweet fuck all to curb teenage drinking, in the eyes of many has exacerbated said problem, and, when framed against various externalities (ie, military service) just looks dumb. I have a hard time getting pissed about it now, because I turned 21 a couple of years ago and you get apathetic about it pretty quick. But it is a social problem that needs to be dealt with and is adversely impacting a lot of people's lives, even though they aren't necessarily my own anymore.

    IIRC aren't the 21-laws a relic of the 80s "Just-say-no/Moral Majority/Tipper Sticker/Reefer Madness 2.0" phase we went through back in the reagan years? You know, back when the whole country went on an insane "protect the children" jag that looked like something out of a south park episode?

    Duffel on
  • zakkielzakkiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    NHTSA. Since the introduction of the federal drinking age drunk driving fatalities have declined in each age group a lot while fatal crashes have held steady. In particular, drunk driving fatalities for drivers under 21 has declined 60%. This decline occurred mostly over the course of the 8 years from 84-92.

    Although there is always going to be debate about causation, it is difficult to argue that the federal drinking age does not save thousands of lives every year.

    zakkiel on
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  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    zakkiel wrote: »
    NHTSA. Since the introduction of the federal drinking age drunk driving fatalities have declined in each age group a lot while fatal crashes have held steady. In particular, drunk driving fatalities for drivers under 21 has declined 60%. This decline occurred mostly over the course of the 8 years from 84-92.

    Although there is always going to be debate about causation, it is difficult to argue that the federal drinking age does not save thousands of lives every year.

    Seeing as it is difficult to show causation, how is that the case? Teenagers haven't suddenly stopped drinking, and nobody is suggesting that drinking and driving should be legalized.

    moniker on
  • DuffelDuffel jacobkosh Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    I would say it's more likely that the massive anti-DUI campaigns of the last couple of decades had more to do with it than raising the drinking age.

    When my dad got his license back in the late 60s the worst thing that could happen to you for DUI was you got put in the drunk tank until the morning (and that was only if you were really fucked up; if you were just buzzed they'd usually just let you go home). Now you're looking at losing your license at the very best and a good possibility at jail time.

    I think it's safe to say that these laws have had a lot more to do with lowering DUI fatalities than the drinking age, because drinking in high school is just as big as it used to be and may have gotten even worse.

    Duffel on
  • PasserbyePasserbye I am much older than you. in Beach CityRegistered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Alecthar wrote: »
    18 is a big marker here, it's legal majority, you can vote, do all kinds of fun adult stuff. By which I mean responsibility. If you're male, you're now ready for a draft. You can join the military. Everything except for drinking.

    I think my favorite bit is that you can't drink at 18, even though alcohol, in moderation, is relatively harmless. Hell, you could even go on a binge a couple of times and not come away with any permanent damage. However, you can smoke tobacco at 18, which is far more dangerous than alcohol. That's what I consider hypocritical.

    Passerbye on
  • DasUberEdwardDasUberEdward Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Our high drinking age has created an idiotic social stigma and taboo in regard to alcohol which leads to situations where a teenager thinks

    OH GOD I GOT DRUNK TONIGHT BUT IF MY PARENTS FIND OUT THEY WILL KILL ME SO I CAN'T ASK FOR A RIDE. I HAD BETTER DRIVE HOME DRUNK INSTEAD

    WHOOPS

    DasUberEdward on
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    In NZ we lowered the drinking age from 20 to 18 on 1 December 1999 or so, and at least on a anecdotal level it does seem there is a bit more of a focus on youth binge drinking.

    I don't know if that is necessarily solely the fault of the lowering though, as that has been combined with the growth of central entertainment districts in the cities I've lived in. Even back only a decade or so, it wasn't so common to have particular streets/districts that were largely devoted to bars/clubs etc, but now it is. So perhaps that is more to blame?

    Either way, the local Law Commission, which is our government's law reform review body, has just started a comprehensive review of Alcohol legislation, including the age question. It does seem doubtful that the age will be dropped though, as a lot of the political figures that supported the 1999 reform are now back in power again

    Kalkino on
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  • zakkielzakkiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    NHTSA. Since the introduction of the federal drinking age drunk driving fatalities have declined in each age group a lot while fatal crashes have held steady. In particular, drunk driving fatalities for drivers under 21 has declined 60%. This decline occurred mostly over the course of the 8 years from 84-92.

    Although there is always going to be debate about causation, it is difficult to argue that the federal drinking age does not save thousands of lives every year.

    Seeing as it is difficult to show causation, how is that the case? Teenagers haven't suddenly stopped drinking, and nobody is suggesting that drinking and driving should be legalized.

    Because the only possible evidence that there could be that raising the drinking age reduces the number of drunk driving fatalities exists. Given that the best possible evidence is already here, refusing to accept it smacks of just not wanting to believe it. It's always possible to conjure post hoc explanations if you are sufficiently determined not to believe the most obvious one.

    zakkiel on
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  • ViolentChemistryViolentChemistry __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2009
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    NHTSA. Since the introduction of the federal drinking age drunk driving fatalities have declined in each age group a lot while fatal crashes have held steady. In particular, drunk driving fatalities for drivers under 21 has declined 60%. This decline occurred mostly over the course of the 8 years from 84-92.

    Although there is always going to be debate about causation, it is difficult to argue that the federal drinking age does not save thousands of lives every year.

    Seeing as it is difficult to show causation, how is that the case? Teenagers haven't suddenly stopped drinking, and nobody is suggesting that drinking and driving should be legalized.

    Because the only possible evidence that there could be that raising the drinking age reduces the number of drunk driving fatalities exists. Given that the best possible evidence is already here, refusing to accept it smacks of just not wanting to believe it. It's always possible to conjure post hoc explanations if you are sufficiently determined not to believe the most obvious one.

    Well obviously we should jack the drinking age up to 35, then.

    ViolentChemistry on
  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    NHTSA. Since the introduction of the federal drinking age drunk driving fatalities have declined in each age group a lot while fatal crashes have held steady. In particular, drunk driving fatalities for drivers under 21 has declined 60%. This decline occurred mostly over the course of the 8 years from 84-92.

    Although there is always going to be debate about causation, it is difficult to argue that the federal drinking age does not save thousands of lives every year.

    Seeing as it is difficult to show causation, how is that the case? Teenagers haven't suddenly stopped drinking, and nobody is suggesting that drinking and driving should be legalized.

    Because the only possible evidence that there could be that raising the drinking age reduces the number of drunk driving fatalities exists. Given that the best possible evidence is already here, refusing to accept it smacks of just not wanting to believe it. It's always possible to conjure post hoc explanations if you are sufficiently determined not to believe the most obvious one.

    The most obvious one being that teenagers suddenly stopped drinking because it became illegal rather than a concerted effort to disincline/punish drunk driving?

    moniker on
  • zakkielzakkiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    moniker wrote: »
    zakkiel wrote: »
    NHTSA. Since the introduction of the federal drinking age drunk driving fatalities have declined in each age group a lot while fatal crashes have held steady. In particular, drunk driving fatalities for drivers under 21 has declined 60%. This decline occurred mostly over the course of the 8 years from 84-92.

    Although there is always going to be debate about causation, it is difficult to argue that the federal drinking age does not save thousands of lives every year.

    Seeing as it is difficult to show causation, how is that the case? Teenagers haven't suddenly stopped drinking, and nobody is suggesting that drinking and driving should be legalized.

    Because the only possible evidence that there could be that raising the drinking age reduces the number of drunk driving fatalities exists. Given that the best possible evidence is already here, refusing to accept it smacks of just not wanting to believe it. It's always possible to conjure post hoc explanations if you are sufficiently determined not to believe the most obvious one.

    The most obvious one being that teenagers suddenly stopped drinking because it became illegal rather than a concerted effort to disincline/punish drunk driving?
    * Youth drinking driver fatal crash involvements decreased substantially from 1982 to 1998 in all regions of the country and in most states. Nationally, involvements per 100,000 population decreased 59 percent, from 21.0 in 1982 to 8.6 in 1998. Involvements per population dropped by more than 50 percent in 45 states.
    * The decrease in many states was similar to the national pattern of Figure 8: a substantial drop from 1982 through the early 1990s, with little subsequent change. Involvements continued to decrease throughout the 1990s in some states, while involvements rose in the late 1990s in a few other states.
    * Thirty-six states raised their minimum drinking age to 21 between 1983 and 1987 (the other 14 states had established MLDA 21 before 1983). All states adopted zero tolerance laws covering all drivers under 21 between 1991 and 1998.
    * In 1998, youth drinking driver fatal crash involvements were about 5 per 100,000 population (or even lower) in the 10 best states and about 15 in the five worst states.

    There is also the fact that drunk driving fatalities dropped more in the 16-20 year old bracket than any other age group and the fact that both binge drinking and any drinking in the last 30 days declined 25% in the high school population from 1982-1992. But most importantly:
    The United States General Accounting Office (1987) reviewed and synthesized results from all 49 studies that had adopted MLDA 21 by 1986. They concluded that "raising the drinking age has a direct effect on reducing alcohol-related traffic accidents among youths affected by the laws, on average, across the states" and that "raising the drinking age also results in a decline in alcohol consumption and in driving after drinking for the age group affected by the law." They note that the traffic accident studies they reviewed were high-quality. While the studies used different evaluation methods, they produced "remarkably consistent" results. Additional studies since 1986 have reached the same basic conclusions (Toomey, Rosenfeld, and Wagenaar, 1996)....

    * High school seniors drank more in MLDA 18 states than in MLDA 21 states.
    * High school senior drinking decreases throughout the 1980s were not due solely to increasing the MLDA � drinking also decreased in states with MLDA 21 throughout the 1980s.
    * After controlling for sex, race, parent education, urbanicity, and region of the country, the MLDA remained a significant predictor of alcohol use: high school seniors drank less if the MLDA was 21 than if it was lower.
    * Even after they reached the age of 21, persons in MLDA 21 states drank slightly less than persons in MLDA 18 states.
    * MLDA 21 reduced traffic crashes, and this is directly the result of lower alcohol consumption.

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  • ViolentChemistryViolentChemistry __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2009
    So why aren't we raising the drinking age to 35?

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  • zakkielzakkiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    So why aren't we raising the drinking age to 35?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diminishing_returns

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  • ViolentChemistryViolentChemistry __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2009
    zakkiel wrote: »
    So why aren't we raising the drinking age to 35?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diminishing_returns

    So that's why we shouldn't raise the drinking age to 65. So why shouldn't we raise the drinking age to 35?

    ViolentChemistry on
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    So that's why we shouldn't raise the drinking age to 65. So why shouldn't we raise the drinking age to 35?

    Or 25. Which would actually be pretty reasonable, and still on the fat side of the diminishing returns curve.

    Because most 25-year-olds I know are significantly more mature than most 21-year-olds I know.
    When you talk about alcohol consumption in high school here there is an "ed" at the end of your "happen" as if it is a thing that was once an institution but no longer is. I submit that that is absurd.

    No shit. Maybe I went to some weird school, but everybody at my high school drank fairly often.

    Well, not literally everybody, but you know what I mean.

    High school kids drink. A lot. *gasp*
    zakkiel wrote: »
    My solution is this: make it legal for anyone 18 and up to drink, and allow them to purchase individual, open drinks as in bars or restaurants. Make it illegal for anyone under 22 to buy closed containers of alcohol.

    I'd probably add closed containers of beer to the list of allowed drinks. Really I'd just limit liquor purchases.
    Zek wrote: »
    Drinking and dying for your country are two completely unrelated things and comparing them is an asinine argument.

    As mentioned, but I'd like to say it as well, it's more a matter of "I'm mature enough to do X and not Y" argument than a "zomg dying for my country" argument. Where X is "carry a deadly weapon while representing the United States of America."
    Thinking back on it, I don't think it was any worse than when I was stationed in San Diego. I think once the new kids had the initial "WOO-HOO! I CAN DRINK?!?!?" phase, (usually about a week to a month) they mellowed out and were ok with the idea. A DUI is still a DUI regardless of age, at least now there's no underage/contributing charge attached as well.

    You see this same phase at 21 stateside, at least I see it in college and saw it in the Army. It's almost as if a higher minimum drinking age merely postpones responsible drinking behavior for many, many people while, for those same people, prolonging irresponsible drinking behavior.
    Quid wrote: »
    ALSO worth note, any military base within fifty miles of Mexico or Canada can set lower the drinking age to 18 on their base. And often do since the other option is their people crossing the border and getting drunk in another country. It's the one thing that made Fort Bliss awesome for a lot of people in my battalion.

    And, since the OP brought up the GRAVE consequences of lowering the drinking age, perhaps he can give us examples of how his theories have played out when such policies are actually implemented. Since they have been. And Fort Bliss is a major base, near a fairly large city...so it seems like a reasonable case to look at.
    I doubt anyone, regardless of age, is allowed to drink before battle.

    In the U.S. armed forces. From what I understand, many other nations allow their forces to drink (in moderation) in combat zones, just not on duty.

    mcdermott on
  • ViolentChemistryViolentChemistry __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2009
    mcdermott wrote: »
    So that's why we shouldn't raise the drinking age to 65. So why shouldn't we raise the drinking age to 35?

    Or 25. Which would actually be pretty reasonable, and still on the fat side of the diminishing returns curve.

    Because most 25-year-olds I know are significantly more mature than most 21-year-olds I know.

    We need to put it far enough out that people under the age aren't hanging out with people over the age. If we make it 25, 23 year olds are going to be dying and killing in droves.

    ViolentChemistry on
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    mcdermott wrote: »
    So that's why we shouldn't raise the drinking age to 65. So why shouldn't we raise the drinking age to 35?

    Or 25. Which would actually be pretty reasonable, and still on the fat side of the diminishing returns curve.

    Because most 25-year-olds I know are significantly more mature than most 21-year-olds I know.

    We need to put it far enough out that people under the age aren't hanging out with people over the age. If we make it 25, 23 year olds are going to be dying and killing in droves.

    What, you don't care about 31-year-olds?

    EDIT: In case it's non-obvious, I'm kidding here and I agree with you.

    mcdermott on
  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    mcdermott wrote: »
    mcdermott wrote: »
    So that's why we shouldn't raise the drinking age to 65. So why shouldn't we raise the drinking age to 35?

    Or 25. Which would actually be pretty reasonable, and still on the fat side of the diminishing returns curve.

    Because most 25-year-olds I know are significantly more mature than most 21-year-olds I know.

    We need to put it far enough out that people under the age aren't hanging out with people over the age. If we make it 25, 23 year olds are going to be dying and killing in droves.

    What, you don't care about 31-year-olds?

    EDIT: In case it's non-obvious, I'm kidding here and I agree with you.

    Don't trust anyone over 30.

    moniker on
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