The United States has one of the highest legal drinking ages in the world. The National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984 [23 U.S.C. § 158] requires states to prohibit persons under the age of 21 from publicly purchasing or possessing alcoholic beverages as a condition of receiving state highway funds. A federal ordinance interpreting the law excludes possession “for established religious purposes” from the definition of “public property”; accompanied by a parent, spouse or legal guardian who is at least 21 years of age; for medical purposes, if prescribed or administered by a physician, pharmacist, dentist, nurse, hospital or authorized medical facility; in clubs or private institutions; or for the sale, handling, transportation, or supply of liquor by reason of the lawful employment of a person under twenty-one years of age by a duly licensed manufacturer, wholesaler, or retailer of liquor” [23 C.F.R. § 1208.3]. For the most part, July 17 is a pretty anticlimactic day. (Unless you claim this date as your birthday, in which case, woo! Confetti keywords and banners.) Without knowing it, however, something happened in 1984 that affects many of us: the National Minimum Drinking Age Act was passed, which set the legal drinking age at 21. In the years following the National Minimum Drinking Age Act, alcohol consumption fell by 19 per cent among 18- to 20-year-olds and by 14 per cent among 21- to 25-year-olds. This was particularly interesting because research has shown that most minors report that alcohol is “fairly easy” or “very easy” to obtain. When it comes to alcohol, even small behavioral checks seem important, Glasner-Edwards says. “If it takes more effort, it saves the person some time to think about how important it is for them to drink at that time or to consider the possible negative consequences of alcohol consumption,” she explains.
“It seems that these barriers are significant for young people to benefit from these minimum age laws.” The legal drinking age is 18 in Abu Dhabi (although a Ministry of Tourism regulation allows hotels to serve alcohol only to people over 21) and 21 in Dubai and the Northern Emirates (except Sharjah, where alcohol consumption is prohibited).  Raising the minimum drinking age has resulted in a decline in overall alcohol consumption among all young adults, even when alcohol is readily available. After prohibition, many states set a legal drinking age of 21. But that began to change after the voting age was lowered to 18. Many states have followed suit by lowering their drinking age, which has changed the landscape for the entire country. In the 1980s, this unusual patchwork was seen as a problem by alcoholics, especially by activist organizations such as MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) and RID (Remove Inwarmated Drivers). They advocated for an age of 21 to drink, and President Ronald Reagan supported the cause. Its mechanism to allow a national law? Threatens to suspend federal funding for highways for states that have not complied. Section 78 of the Children`s Act – No person shall sell, lend, give, supply, provide or offer liquor to children under 16 years of age unless there is a written order signed by the parent or guardian of the child known to that person. The police have a duty to confiscate any alcoholic beverage in the possession of a child under the age of 16 without the written consent of parents or guardians.  Many activities have an age of initiation. A person has to wait until the age of 16 to start driving, until the age of 18 to marry without parental consent, until the age of 35 to become president, and so on.
The age limit for alcohol is based on research showing that young people react differently to alcohol. Adolescents get drunk twice as fast as adults,9 but have a harder time knowing when to stop. Teenagers, of course, overdo it and are more often than adults. Raising the legal drinking age of 21 reduces road accidents,4-6 protects the brains of mature youth,12,14 and ensures overall safety. References 4. Fell, J.; Minimum Legal Drinking Age Policy Knowledge Asset, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Substance Abuse Policy Research Program website; March 2009. Read More However, when the legal drinking age dropped nationwide in the `70s, alarm bells began ringing, notes licensed clinical psychologist Suzette Glasner-Edwards, PhD, associate professor at UCLA`s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior. “Research conducted after this period strongly suggested that an increase in road accidents among young people was associated with this change in the legal drinking age,” she tells Teen Vogue.
“As a result, citizen efforts have begun to push states to reinstate 21 as the legal minimum age.” At the end of prohibition in the 1930s, the legal drinking age was 21. This norm remained constant until 1971, when the minimum voting age was lowered to 18 and enthusiasm for lowering the legal drinking age also began to grow. Between 1970 and 1975, nearly half of the states lowered the drinking age to 18, 19 and 20. Some states allow parents to do this with their own child (rarely, if ever, someone else`s child), but there is no evidence that this approach actually works.3 In fact, there is evidence to the contrary. When teens feel they have their parents` consent to drink, they increasingly do so when they are not with their parents. When parents have concrete and enforced rules for alcohol, young people drink less. References 3. Fallen, James. Excerpted from “Chapter 2: Federalism: Resolute, the Federal Government Should Restore the Freedom of Each State to Set Its Drinking Age.” in Ellis, Richard and Nelson, Michael (eds.) Debating Reform. CQPress Publishers, Fall 2009. History says no.
When U.S. states had a lower legal drinking age, the drinking problem was worse for minors.3 For example, before the legal drinking age of 21 was introduced by all states, underage drunk drivers were involved in more than twice as many fatal motor vehicle accidents as they are today.3 References 3. Has fallen, James. Excerpted from “Chapter 2: Federalism: Resolute, the Federal Government Should Restore the Freedom of Each State to Set Its Drinking Age.” in Ellis, Richard and Nelson, Michael (eds.) Debating Reform. CQPress Publishers, Fall 2009. In the late 20th century, much of North America changed its legal drinking age (MLDA) as follows: police can search minors in public places and confiscate or destroy alcoholic beverages in their possession. Incidents are reported to the legal guardian and child protection services, who may be involved in child protection proceedings. In addition, a fine is imposed on persons aged 15 and over.  Some states do not allow people under the legal drinking age to stay in liquor stores or bars (usually, the difference between a bar and a restaurant is that food is only served in the latter). Contrary to popular belief, only a few states prohibit minors and young adults from consuming alcohol in private places.
In fact, young people in Europe have higher rates of poisoning than in the United States, and less than a quarter had rates lower or equivalent to those in the United States. In addition, a higher percentage of young people in the majority of Europe report excessive drinking more often than in the United States.