The Legal Drinking Age Should Be Abolished

1634 WordsMar 7, 20157 Pages
Legality and Liquor: A Balancing Act Laws surrounding alcohol use and consumption in the United States all stem from one major root: the Prohibition Era of the 1920s. The Prohibition Era lasted almost thirteen years and banned the production, the distribution, and the sale of alcohol. In 1933, the Prohibition Act was repealed and states designated their own legal drinking age. In 1984 the National Minimum Drinking Age act was passed and raised the drinking age in the United States to twenty-one. This law caused uproar in states that had declared the minimum drinking age to be eighteen. Alcohol consumption is a major factor in cultural and social matters and the National Minimum Drinking Age has affected everybody. This law is unjust…show more content…
Alcohol has had a long history with amendments and ratifications. Some of the most notable amendments related to drinking are the eighteenth and the twenty-first amendments. The eighteenth amendment was based off prohibition and essentially banned alcohol from the United States. Antecedently, the twenty-first amendment repealed the eighteenth amendment. This left the states open to choose a legal drinking age; all of the states decided upon ages no less than eighteen and no greater than twenty-one. There is another pressing moral dilemma surrounding the National Minimum Drinking Age act. President Reagan, who signed the act recommended that, “All states should raise their drinking age to twenty-one, lest they lose a percentage of federal highway dollars” (Choose Responsibility). This was a not so subtle threat to the states. If the states did not change their legal drinking ages to twenty-one their highway funding would be cut, causing major problems with untended roads and ironically reducing roadway safety. It proved an effective threat as all the states adapted over to this law to avoid losing funding. This threat is a gross injustice of the National Minimum Drinking Age act, which is tied in with ex-post facto laws. Eighteen year olds hit a constitutional jackpot with their rights on their birthday, but they lack one very noticeable right: the right to possess and consume
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