Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

Join our team
Join the Falcon Media team for Spring semester - paid staff positions, internships, volunteer opportunities. Applications open now until October 13. Get the details!
The BG News
BG24 Newscast
September 21, 2023

Follow us on social
  • My Fiction Icks
    By Jay Grummel When you read as much as I do you start to notice common things in fiction that make you annoyed, upset  or even want to put down the book completely. I have a bad habit of not giving books much of a chance when they use some of these personal ‘icks’. However, […]
  • Poetry for Fall
    By Jay Grummel Poetry has a way of connecting us to the external and internal world. In poetry it is easier to feel a season and truly feel a piece due to this. Poetry has a subtle way of making the readers immersed into the world of the poem. With the air getting colder and […]

Raise the drinking age to 25

As a new school year begins, as dorms fill with new and returning students alike, a single thought frequents the minds of every member of our population: newfound freedom from a summer of jobs and familial responsibilities.

But our return to school coexists with a possibly lethal counterpart: college drinking.

Nearly everyone is exposed to parties during college, and one would be hard pressed to find a college party without alcohol. Most University students indicate in countless surveys they have used alcohol in a social setting before age 21.

It is startling just how ineffective current laws have been at curbing underage drinking.

A dramatic change is needed in the way society addresses drinking and the way we enforce existing laws, and it can start with a simple change: making the drinking age 25.

Access and availability are the principal reasons underage drinking has become easy to do. Not through direct availability, but through access to legal-aged “friends.”

In a college setting, it is all but impossible not to know a person who is older than 21 and willing to provide alcohol to younger students. Even if unintentional, there is no verification that each person who drinks is of the appropriate age.

However, it should be quite easy to ensure underage individuals don’t have access to alcohol. In reality, those who abstain from alcohol are in the minority. Countless people our age consider speeding tickets worse than an arrest for underage consumption.

Is it truly possible alcohol abuse has become so commonplace, so acceptable, that people forget the facts?

Each year, 1,400 people die from drinking too much – 600,000 are victims of alcohol-related physical assault and 17,000 are a result of drunken driving deaths, many being innocent bystanders.

Perhaps the most disturbing number: 70,000 people, overwhelmingly female, are annually sexually assaulted in alcohol-related situations.

These numbers are difficult to grasp for the sheer prevalence of alcoholic destruction. Yet, we, as college students, are responsible for an overwhelming portion of their incidence. It is difficult to imagine anyone would wish to assume the role of rapist, murderer or victim. We all assume these things could never happen to us, but I am certain victims in these situations thought the same.

The simple truth is that driving under the influence is the leading cause of death for teens. For 10- to 24-year-olds, alcohol is the fourth-leading cause of death, made so by factors ranging from alcohol poisoning to alcohol-related assault and murder.

For the sake of our friends, those we love, our futures and ourselves, we must take a stand and we must do it now.

Advocates of lowering the drinking age assert only four countries worldwide maintain a “21 standard,” and a gradual transition to alcohol is useful in reducing the systemic social problems of substance abuse.

If those under the age of 21 are misusing alcohol, it makes little sense to grant free range to those individuals to use it legally. A parent who observes their children abusing the neighbor’s dog would be irresponsible to get one of their own without altering such dangerous behavior.

Increasing the drinking age will help in the search for solutions to grievous alcoholic problems, making it far more difficult in college environments to find legal-aged providers.

By the time we are 25, with careers and possibly families of our own, there is no safety net to allow us to have a “Thirsty Thursday.” But increasing the legal age is not all that needs to be done. Drinking to get drunk needs to exist as a social taboo rather than a doorway to popularity.

Peer pressure can become a tool to change this. What once was a factor greatly contributing to underage drinking can now become an instrument of good, seeking to end such a dangerous practice as excessive drinking. Laws on drinking ages, as any other law, need to be enforced with the energy and vigor each of us should expect.

Alcohol is not an inherently evil poison. It does have its place, as do all things in the great scheme of life.

But with alcohol comes the terrible risk of abuse with consequences many do not consider. All too often, these consequences include robbing someone of his life or loved one. All communities in the country, our own included, have been touched by such a tragedy.

Because of this, and the hundreds of thousands of victims each year in alcohol-related situations, I ask that you consider the very real possibility of taking the life of another due to irresponsible drinking.

If this is not enough, then take time to think, because that life could very well be your own.

Leave a Comment
Donate to BG Falcon Media

Your donation will support the student journalists of Bowling Green State University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to BG Falcon Media

Comments (0)

All BG Falcon Media Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *