Reconsider the drinking age law

Janine Fagan

Janine Fagan

Both English and Americans like to have a drink; the only difference is that the English are not afraid to tell the rest of the world.

Why is the average American so afraid to admit they enjoy a sociable beverage?

I guess the answer lies deep beneath the old American dream and I haven’t figured it out yet.

Alcohol is almost everywhere and almost everyone is drinking it, so I caution parents to not be fooled by their adolescents because they do find ways to do it.

Young kids are the only innocencent ones, but once they are confronted with peer pressure they will find ways to do it.

You did it didn’t you? We all did.

Arriving in the U.S. at the age of 22, the drinking age that comes with being in the new world has not really affected my own lifestyle, however I continue to witness the uncontrolled behavior of young Americans indulged in alcohol.

Young Americans are fiends for alcohol. I don’t know what or how American society has done to create such an ongoing problem with underage drinking.

Being a self-supporting international student, I have chosen through necessity to live in residential housing for my four years of college, and it is there that I have gained my knowledge and opinion of underage American college students.

When thinking about it, I don’t know if it is plainly the fact that young Americans are not allowed to drink that has instigated a rebellious movement, or whether it is the fact that authority figures over-emphasize, but don’t over-punish young people when they are caught that has instilled them with this attitude about drinking alcohol.

I was 13 years old when I had my first taste of alcohol and I guess you might say I have been drinking ever since, but I am yet to behave in the same way as the majority of American college students.

Now perhaps you are thinking, she was 13 when she had her first drink! That’s so young! However, the same thing is happening right now throughout America and society fails to recognize it.

I am aware of the fact that not all college students drink and my opinion is not an all-encompassing statement, but I would like to add that the college students who do not drink stand as a minority.

In the United Kingdom, 18 is the secret age to drink, so maybe the problem lies in the fact that you have to be 21 to drink in the U.S.

When I go out for a drink I don’t need to get drunk, we enjoy what the English call a “sociable bevy,” and so far that concept seems to hold no weight to Americans.

Now, in the U.K. we are accepting of spending our lunch time in the pub, eating pub food and having a pint. However, if an American returned to work after lunch with any indication of alcohol use, they would be signed into a branch of Alcoholics Anonymous by two that afternoon.

So could it be simply a cultural thing or does it come down to the difference in maturity levels of both cultures?

Does the answer to this problem solely rely on the fact that Americans are not allowed to drink until they are 21 and therefore have a much more insubordinate attitude?

Growing up in a country and a society that never really overemphasized the “Not old enough to drink” policy, I guess I never gave the drinking age limit much thought until now.

We must ask ourselves, has alcohol become our only way to accept silly behavior or have we just turned alcohol into an excuse tool for our own insecurities?

Janine Fagan is from Great Britain. Write her at [email protected]