The American Drinking Age

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The American Drinking Age

 The drinking age as 21 is totally irrational. What a random number to pick from a hat! We all know people can smoke cigarettes and go to war at 18, but having a sip of alcohol at a bar? Nope.

It's completely ridiculous. 

First of all, people need to be educated about alcohol and misuse. This could help prevent drunk driving incidents.

I have a strong notion that many teens/college students get "wasted" partly because alcohol is illegal. If you make something illegal, it becomes more elusive, especially if it is age-based. Teens are more likely to buy kegs since alcohol is harder for them to get. They stock up, invite their friends over, and pretty soon there's a drinking party.

In Switzerland, the drinking age is 16 for beer/wine and 18 for hard liquor. Switzerland's economy is excellent, their youth are well educated, and their drunk driving incidents aren't nearly as bad as ours. This could be for many other reasons, including the fact that many towns are closer together so driving isn't always necessary, but still. 

My friend from Israel told me, yes teens still drink in his country, but people don't take alcohol as seriously. Kids drink with parents and learn from an early age it's not a big deal, something adults do and not all that exciting. This is just personal experience, but I can't help but notice American young adults are far more alcohol-obsessed than Europeans in terms of drinking heavily.

 

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Blame the lingering effects

Blame the lingering effects of puritanism and how MADD has moved from being a good thing to a fanatical neo-prohibitionist organization.

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The age of adulthood is a

The age of adulthood is a bit arbitary but as a guideline is probably useful. However my problem is the way different levels of responsbility don't occur at the same age.

UK its sex at 16 but marriage without parent permission is 18

You are liable for your crimes at 10 (still generally treated more lienently until 14)

You can smoke at 18 (used to be 16) and can drink at 18.

You can vote and kill at 18 (can join the army just before 16 but can't go to the frontline)

 

I think the problem is when people take it literally. Someone who has a beer at 17 should not be getting a criminal record (a warning and taking the drinks  of someone is sufficient).

Same as someone who has sex at 16 with a 15 year old in most cases should not be a criminal matter (despite it being illegal).

 


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After becoming legal I

After becoming legal I pretty much stopped drinking. It was more fun when it was I shouldn't have been doing. Now that I am 39 I just enjoy a cold one every once in awhile where as a 17 year old I drank A LOT. When I was in the navy I drank a lot as well, but mostly because it was almost expected that you would. I guess peer pressure mostly.

Matt hit it right on the head more or less when he said that it's basically cultural.

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Hit it again

Cali_Athiest2 wrote:

Matt hit it right on the head more or less when he said that it's basically cultural.

        Matt hits a lot of things right on the head.  


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Also in health (yes one of

Also in health (yes one of the few classes I pay attention in), I learned that 21 is when your liver fully develops in most cases.

Unless that was one of the days I was stoned, give me some lee-way. But if the case is so, then honestly they are just doing it for you're well being.

And teenagers drink anyway, but think if it was legal, more teenagers would be drinking.. and also driving.

 

I'm not nice with that topic, my step mother killed a couple driving drunk, and I hate her for it and deny her.

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Blake32 wrote:Also in health

Blake32 wrote:

Also in health (yes one of the few classes I pay attention in), I learned that 21 is when your liver fully develops in most cases.

Ah-hahahaha! Seriously, where do they teach this shit? The liver is regenerative. Its size is irrelevant. Making a political issue into a school-taught health issue is terrible.

I'm certainly not blaming you for poor curriculum, that's just shady.

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I thought the title of this

I thought the title of this post was The American Drinking Ape, and I thought, "Yup, that's about right."

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MattShizzle wrote:Blame the

MattShizzle wrote:

Blame the lingering effects of puritanism and how MADD has moved from being a good thing to a fanatical neo-prohibitionist organization.

 

Reminds me.....

anyone know what D.A.M. is ???

anyone, anyone, Bueh...


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HisWillness wrote:Blake32

HisWillness wrote:

Blake32 wrote:

Also in health (yes one of the few classes I pay attention in), I learned that 21 is when your liver fully develops in most cases.

Ah-hahahaha! Seriously, where do they teach this shit? The liver is regenerative. Its size is irrelevant. Making a political issue into a school-taught health issue is terrible.

I'm certainly not blaming you for poor curriculum, that's just shady.

Regenerative in what way ?  What about conditions like hepatitis C or cirrhosis of the liver ?  I thought those diseases were basically a death  sentence ?

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Age of consent again

 

    I think the age for a marriage should be about 30 something !!


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I think think this just

I think think this just touches on a much deeper issue: we just don't have a standard way to grow up. What age do we stop breastfeeding? Or stop riding in a stroller? Or walk across the street without holding hands? And it gets really difficult when you try and determine what age we physically and mentally become adults. Or if it's even at the same time. Or if some people ever even do. When governments pass laws, they're attempting to standardize things that are just impossible to make standard for everyone. So me and my friends, and most of the kids at my school for that matter, usually don't operate by the government's standards.

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ProzacDeathWish

ProzacDeathWish wrote:

Regenerative in what way ?  What about conditions like hepatitis C or cirrhosis of the liver ?  I thought those diseases were basically a death  sentence ?

Cirrhosis is a kind of "malfunction" of that regenerative property, and hep C is a virus that can attack the liver quicker than it can regenerate. It's not a death sentence, as far as I know, considering there are quite a number of people I've heard of who live with the disease asymptomatically. I'm not a clinician, though, so I'm sure that's not the whole story.

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Boon Docks wrote:    I

Boon Docks wrote:

    I think the age for a marriage should be about 30 something !!

You're a genius. No joke - that's something that NEEDS a minimum age.

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It's a culture thing...

I think the American drinking age has a lot to do with our culture.

 

Most European countries have lower legal drinking ages. They also have a history of drinking alcoholic beverages as a part of every day life. Various reasons, including polluted water, lead to the substitution of distilled or fermented drinks, which became embedded in their culture. All people drank, though not to excess, from an early age.

In America, much of our culture has been influenced by Puritan mentality (damned evil alcohol) and we have benefited from comparatively clean water. The *need* for alcohol wasn't there. Our youth don't grow up with it, and so don't know how to handle themselves when they finally start drinking.

While I agree that the age of 21 seems rather arbitrary, and inconsistent with other allowances we make to people as young as 16 or 17, I can see that a few more years of life experience and hopefully maturing a little might make the difference between drunk and stupid drunk. It's -- at least partly -- because we do not have alcohol embedded as part of our culture the same way as Europe does.


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Hmac wrote:While I agree

Hmac wrote:
While I agree that the age of 21 seems rather arbitrary, and inconsistent with other allowances we make to people as young as 16 or 17, I can see that a few more years of life experience and hopefully maturing a little might make the difference between drunk and stupid drunk. It's -- at least partly -- because we do not have alcohol embedded as part of our culture the same way as Europe does.
And you're wrong.  And so is anyone else who thinks that the drinking age in the States only seems rather arbitrary, or that it allows more time for a person to mature before they start drinking.  There are a number of statistics that reduce those two arguments to steaming piles.  See Binge Drinking and Underage Drinking.

Frankly, I don't care what completely arbitrary, and no matter the excuse (puritan influence, I'll get back to it) it is arbitrary, drinking age my neighbours to the south enact to... well... it doesn't really do anything does it?  If the drinking age were supposed to have some societal benefit, it is not fulfilling its role.  As far as I can tell there is rather poor education on alcohol consumption in the States and entirely counterproductive (if there was anything other than the drinking age to act against) advertising campaigns that target obviously young, even questionably young, adults(?).

Now, onto the myth that alochol isn't or wasn't an ingrained part of American culture at any point in time.  Or, puritan influences.  That is all they were, though.  If alcohol wasn't or isn't a part of American culture then someone should answer for the massive illegal trade and consumption during prohibition, its subsequent repeal, the (multi)billion dollar industry and the marketing that exists today.  Very really, alcohol is a serious and ingrained part of American culture and the drinking age and the politics associated with it only further illustrate that point.

Matt hit the nail just to the right of dead centre, of course; it really is just religious and fantatical anti-alcohol politics that maintain the drinking age, but also dry states and the myriad of other stupid laws surrounding alcohol south of Canada's border.

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Technically there are no dry

Technically there are no dry STATES (even Utha) but there are counties, and yeah that shouldn't be allowed. Who the fuck would want to live in one?

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Thomathy wrote:alcohol is a

Thomathy wrote:

alcohol is a serious and ingrained part of American culture

 

NOT in the same way it is in Europe.


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MattShizzle

MattShizzle wrote:

Technically there are no dry STATES (even Utha) but there are counties, and yeah that shouldn't be allowed. Who the fuck would want to live in one?

Thanks.  I meant that and not states.


 

BigUniverse wrote,

"Well the things that happen less often are more likely to be the result of the supper natural. A thing like loosing my keys in the morning is not likely supper natural, but finding a thousand dollars or meeting a celebrity might be."


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Hmac wrote:Thomathy

Hmac wrote:

Thomathy wrote:

alcohol is a serious and ingrained part of American culture

 

NOT in the same way it is in Europe.

What countries specifically?  Not the UK.  And even if it were not in the same way as in whatever country you wish to cite, it is of no consequence to my argument.  Alcohol is a part of American culture, even in its own way, and the drinking age is arbitrary.


 

BigUniverse wrote,

"Well the things that happen less often are more likely to be the result of the supper natural. A thing like loosing my keys in the morning is not likely supper natural, but finding a thousand dollars or meeting a celebrity might be."


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Thomathy wrote:Hmac

Thomathy wrote:

Hmac wrote:

Thomathy wrote:

alcohol is a serious and ingrained part of American culture

 

NOT in the same way it is in Europe.

What countries specifically?  Not the UK.  And even if it were not in the same way as in whatever country you wish to cite, it is of no consequence to my argument.  Alcohol is a part of American culture, even in its own way, and the drinking age is arbitrary.


 

 

 

What county? Pick one.

Your argument is that the US drinking age is an arbitrary number. OK, fine. I agree. Don't pigeon-hole your thinking and try to present your argument from the back of the hole, so that when you look out you only see one little aspect of the issue. That's not very... rational... is it?


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Hmac wrote: What county?

Hmac wrote:

 

What county? Pick one.

Your argument is that the US drinking age is an arbitrary number. OK, fine. I agree. Don't pigeon-hole your thinking and try to present your argument from the back of the hole, so that when you look out you only see one little aspect of the issue. That's not very... rational... is it?

This should be fun.  Let's pick a European country.  Actually, I'll pick more than one.  Belgium, Malta, the UK, Spain and most of Northern Europe.  Now, since we were talking about cultures of alcohol that differ from the US, what do you suppose these places have in common?  Teenage and young adult binge drinking.  Also, alcohol marketing is very consistent across the whole of Europe and the Americas and consumption is higher virtually anywhere in Europe than in the United States and, oddly, lower in Canada than the United States.  Yes, in some European countries young people are introduced to alcohol in a way that promotes responsible consumption, but it certainly doesn't ensure it.  Just as the same tradition in homes across the US and Canada doesn't ensure it.  Further are rates of alcoholism and general abuse throughout Europe which don't look strikingly dissimilar to those rates in the US, or Canada for that matter, despite lower levels of alcohol consumption.  Alcohol has been a part of Western culture in general for a very long time and this pretend disassociation between the culture of alcohol in Europe and America is really just that, pretend.  The imagination, of course, is that of America, where alcohol is consumed at nearly half the amount per capita compared to Luxembourg and the people are just a little bit more... religious.  I suppose from that perspective the drinking culture is a bit different: Americans drink less and emphasis their societal problems out of proportion resulting in ridiculous laws influenced by the political weight of religious stupidity and fanatical anti-alcohol mothers.

Pigeon hole?

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 Quote:Further are rates of

 

Quote:
Further are rates of alcoholism and general abuse throughout Europe which don't look strikingly dissimilar to those rates in the US, or Canada for that matter, despite lower levels of alcohol consumption.  

 

I would actually like to see these numbers, if you know where to point me to them.

 

Interestingly, my father (used to be a big brewing guy) has a child's stein from Germany.  It's a cute little cup so junior can drink with dad.  It's also pretty old, as evidenced by the lead-pewter cap.

 

pigeonhole

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Balrogoz

Balrogoz wrote:

 

Quote:
Further are rates of alcoholism and general abuse throughout Europe which don't look strikingly dissimilar to those rates in the US, or Canada for that matter, despite lower levels of alcohol consumption.  

 

I would actually like to see these numbers, if you know where to point me to them.

 

Interestingly, my father (used to be a big brewing guy) has a child's stein from Germany.  It's a cute little cup so junior can drink with dad.  It's also pretty old, as evidenced by the lead-pewter cap.

 

pigeonhole

   alcoholisma crude list of alcoholism rates normalized by comparisons to key countries.  The rates per capita are fairly consistent, you can do the calculations yourself.

consumption Wikipedia list of the WHO figures.

drinking age Wikipedia list of figures from countries.

WHO excellent WHO page listing their reports on alcohol.  I recommend the reports on injuries, global consumption (Europe specifically) and on youth.

If you have luck tracking down statistics from individual countries, you'll find not much is different.  Alcoholism the world over is worse where there are more poor, go figure.  I still can't penetrate Health Canada or StatsCan deep enough to get anything relevant, but that's typical of those two organizations.

I know what it is to pigeon hole, btw.

BigUniverse wrote,

"Well the things that happen less often are more likely to be the result of the supper natural. A thing like loosing my keys in the morning is not likely supper natural, but finding a thousand dollars or meeting a celebrity might be."


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Thomathy

Thomathy wrote:
<links>

thanks!

 

Thomathy wrote:

I know what it is to pigeon hole, btw.

 

oh.

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Look, I didn't come here to

Look, I didn't come here to start a rock fight. I'm trying to think outside the box, and offer an opinion.

Yes, alcoholism per capita is pretty consistent globally. Alcohol consumption is declining in the US; not so much in Europe.

Binge drinking and stupidity per capita? I dunno.

I stand down. I see your points, largely agree with them; I simply have tried to fathom a reason for the differences. In the 20th & 21st centuries, it appears my reasoning is invalid. Admittedly, it may never have been valid.

I admit I could be wrong. Fair enough. I have a problem with verbalizing ideas that are crystal clear to me, but for some reason not to others, and I don't have time presently to prepare an essay to paint a picture.


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DUI's are a money maker,

DUI's are a money maker, especially in areas with lots of young people, like college towns.  I can tell you first hand that in my particular college town, there is very little effort put into stopping kids from driving drunk.  They put lots and lots of effort into getting kids busted on DUIs and getting their money flowing through the local police and legal system.

Speaking about not doing anything to prevent drunk driving, America is designed as a car culture.  Period.  Only in the biggest and oldest cities do you have a safe, reliable mass transit system that runs late enough to get people home safely from the bars.  Rather than encouraging people to commute safely by giving them safe methods, we tell them not to drive, and then leave them no alternative.

Speaking of not doing anything to prevent drunk driving, it's just plain stupid to penalize bars for someone else's crimes -- especially in a Rethuglican style government that's supposed to be all about "personal responsibility" and "pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps."  When an eighteen year old goes into a bar and orders a drink, he's trying to commit a crime.  Drinking underage is a crime.  Yet, instead of sending police out en masse checking IDs and handing out citations to underage drinkers, we have an elaborate system of sting operations designed to punish bar owners and bartenders for not reading an ID correctly during a hectic rush while dozens of customers are all yelling at them for drinks.  Anyone care to guess why?  Bar owners cannot afford to fight the system, especially when they know that if they fight too vigorously, their liquor license may be "held up" in bureaucratic channels next year, and they might have to close.

The drinking age should be 18.  That's when you go off to college, when you can go to war, buy cigarettes, and vote.  It makes no sense to say that alcohol is so dangerous that it can't be safely used until 21 -- especially considering the fact that marijuana is illegal, and there's no such thing as a traffic fatality caused by pot.

Ok... here's where I stand to really piss somebody off.  There is no such thing as an alcohol problem.  There are problems that lead people to abuse alcohol.  There's no good science at all which indicates that healthy, mentally stable, happy people will descend into abuse, neglect, and unsafe driving just from drinking.  There has to be something else going on in a person's life to make alcohol an issue.  Alcohol abuse is a symptom of a problem, not a cause.

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Ages of legal importance in Germany

7 -     limited legal capacity

14 -   Age of Criminal Responsiblity

         Right to change ones religious affiliation freely

         Right to visit cinemas until 10pm

         Age of sexual consent, in cases in which a person older then 16 does not exploit a possibly exsiting sexual immaturity

16 -   Limited Right to enter marriage

         Duty to own an identity card (not to carry it around as many Germans falsely believe)

         Right to visit Pubs and Dance or Filmevents (Discos and Cinemas) until midnight.

         Right to acquire and consum alcohol (excpetion for hard liquors)

         Full Age of sexual consent

         Right to vote on a local level in several German states

17 -   Possbility of voluntarily joining the German army

         Right to drive a car when accompanied by an older driver

18 -   Age from which on male Germans can be drafted for the army

         Full rights to vote

         Right to drive a car alone

         Allowed to smoke in public

         Allowed to drink hard liquor

and finally

40 -   Minimum age to become Federal President of Germany (not to mixed up with Chancellor of Germany which one could theoretically become with 18)

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Hambydammit wrote:Ok...

Hambydammit wrote:

Ok... here's where I stand to really piss somebody off.  There is no such thing as an alcohol problem.  There are problems that lead people to abuse alcohol.  There's no good science at all which indicates that healthy, mentally stable, happy people will descend into abuse, neglect, and unsafe driving just from drinking.  There has to be something else going on in a person's life to make alcohol an issue.  Alcohol abuse is a symptom of a problem, not a cause.

Actually I agree. When I was younger and very depressed I drank a lot, enough that most people would call it a drinking problem. But I grew out of it, made some new friends, and now I don't have the desire to drink so much.

However, isn't there some evidence that turning to alcohol is a genetic trait? Apparently the urge to drink comes from our ancestors eating fermenting fruit, and some of us have a biological compulsion to drink. Some also have no compulsion at all and avoid alcohol all together.

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GermanMike

GermanMike wrote:

         Right to visit cinemas until 10pm

      

         Right to visit Pubs and Dance or Filmevents (Discos and Cinemas) until midnight.

        

You have curfews in Germany? So a 16 year old can't stay out past midnight? Warped..

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When they are accompanied by

When they are accompanied by their parents or other adult persons in authority over them, they can stay as long as they want. Or better: As long as their parents let them.

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Lower the Age to Drink

In 1968 when I turned 18 the drinking age was 18 and the voting age changed from 21 to 18. Many states also dropped the legal age to drink to 18 at least for beer.

In 1984  as part of the Uniform Drinking Act all states had to increase it to 21 or lose federal funds. Similar to the 55 MPH highway funds threat.

It certainly had no effect on the 19 year old girl that hit me nearly head on in 1985 going 120 mph. She had a blood alcohol of .28. This was in Colorado on a 2 lane road with ditches made of rock. I headed for the ditch and nearly made it when she hit the rear of my car. I ended up rolling and spinning like a top in the ditch. I walked away with a cracked head and knee. The drunk girl that hit me had to be cut out of her car. She had extensive injuries and to this day has loss of mental functions.

Did a law stop her. No. She would likely have driven drunk regardless.

Despite that, I'm in favor of reducing the limit to 18. Even 14 or 15 with parents supervision such as at home. Perhaps experience with the effects of alcohol would help.

In my case I drank alot with my friends from 15 to about my 18th birthday. After I was 18 I lost interest and hardly drank at all. This was during the Viet Nam War and we all had the thought: graduate from high school, get drafted, go to Nam, die. It was hard to plan then. In 4 years of college I only remember being drunk once, and no it wasn't for the whole 4 years.

Wonko wrote:

Reminds me.....

anyone know what D.A.M. is ???

If I remember this is really D.A.M.M. and is Drunks Against Mad Mothers.

 

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Did something specific

Did something specific motivate this post?


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Loc wrote:GermanMike

Loc wrote:

GermanMike wrote:

         Right to visit cinemas until 10pm

      

         Right to visit Pubs and Dance or Filmevents (Discos and Cinemas) until midnight.

        

You have curfews in Germany? So a 16 year old can't stay out past midnight? Warped..

They have curfews in some of the counties around here (VA & MD).


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The town I live in it's 10pm

The town I live in it's 10pm - unless they are out for work or a school event or with their parents. My dad actually voted for it while on borough council, mainly due to the ammount of vandalism going on.

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Hmmm some sort of curfew for

Hmmm some sort of curfew for unaccompanied kids is something that is being considered in parts of the UK and I'm not sure I'm actually against it.  Kids dont have the same rights of adults (or responsibilities). There is only one real way of reducing crime and that is reducing personal freedom, any one who thinks there is any other way of doing is dreaming.

 

I'm interested in this link between drink driving and minimum drinking age never really thought about it as in the UK people can generaly get hold of a can of beer a lot easier than they can come across a car. I personally have the minimum age for driving a car increased to 21 (I believe this has already happend at weekends in some European countries).

I think drink driving problems in the US are  mainly due to the 'driving' bit not the drinking.

Oh well I'm 36 reasonably well of and I've never owned a car or likely to

 


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Problem is, in the US most

Problem is, in the US most places not having a car is simply not an option. Many of us don't live close enough to jobs, grocery to be able to walk or bike, and outside of cities and immediate suburbs public transportation simply does not exist.

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MattShizzle wrote:Problem

MattShizzle wrote:

Problem is, in the US most places not having a car is simply not an option. Many of us don't live close enough to jobs, grocery to be able to walk or bike, and outside of cities and immediate suburbs public transportation simply does not exist.

Living outside cities simpliest isnt enviromentally friendly, its a harsh reality but the best way to improve the enivorment is to increase population density (ie smaller houses). Not going to happen of course but pretending that their is any such thing as an enviromentally friendly car is a joke. If a car ran on compressed air (they do exist!) it still would not be as enviromentally friendly as most forms of public transport

 

 


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Yeah and most US cities

Yeah and most US cities aren't places people who enjoy not getting robbed or shot would want to live.

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mrjonno wrote:Living outside

mrjonno wrote:

Living outside cities simpliest isnt enviromentally friendly, its a harsh reality but the best way to improve the enivorment is to increase population density (ie smaller houses).

If you think increasing population density is the answer for the environment, you're straight up bonkers. All those people are still creating natural and industrial waste that needs to be dealt with.

The only real way to know we're not drastically impacting the environment isn't having more people in a cramped space, it's having less people and spreading them further apart so we all have enough resources. This is also unlikely to happen though; I don't see a couple billion people volunteering to die so whoever is left can live more comfortably.

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MattShizzle wrote:Yeah and

MattShizzle wrote:

Yeah and most US cities aren't places people who enjoy not getting robbed or shot would want to live.

 

And what people arent prepared  to admit if  you want to protect the enviroment you're standard of living has to be reduced

 


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Very few people would be

Very few people would be willing to reduce it that far to protect it. I sure wouldn't be willing to move to a city.

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If global warming is the

If global warming is the threat that the general scientific consensus says it is then what people want is going to be irrelevant.

I do agree that in the end of the day human beings are simply not 'designed' to care about their species merely their immediately family and friends. Democracy and enviromentalism may well be as about as compatible as religion and democracy.

More realistically what will happen will be the 1st world will adapt and the 3rd world will drown (as well as the usual starvation , disease etc). If its a choice between 1st world luxuries and 3rd world babies people are going to choose their new plasma tv. It's not that most people want little african babies to die its that they prefer big tv's.

I've thought about it a lot myself and I'm in the selfish category I care about all the evils of the world but not really enough to compromise much my way of life.

 


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It's a question of how much

It's a question of how much someone's willing to do. Cutting back some is one thing, living a 3rd world lifestyle or moving somewhere you hear gunshots and sirens all night and anything you leave on the porch for an hour will be gone is way more than all but a very few people who most others would consider insane are willing to do. I put giving up air conditioning in the same category. I actually feel sick if I'm in 80° temperature for long. AC is a necessity as far as I'm concerned.

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There's now an organization

There's now an organization of College Presidents who want it changed to 18 - saying having it 21 makes things worse. Of course the neo-prohibitionists at MADD (they ought to drop the 2nd D and just be Mothers Against Drinking - notice their logo isn't a steering whell with liquor crossed out - it's just the booze crossed out. ) are bringing in the ad homs and non-sequitors.

Article

 

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According to the National

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration the number of 16-20 year old dd crashes that ended in one or more fatals is down 63% since 1982 and down 14% since 2000.

The overall dd crashes that ended in fatal(s) has declined 38 percent since 1982 with a total of 8,100 fewer fatalities last year than back in 1982.

 

 

 


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I've said it before, and

I've said it before, and I'll say it until someone hears it.  The problem is not with 18 year olds drinking.  It's a problem with the transportation system.  If there's no alternatives to driving, people of all ages will drive.

 

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Hambydammit wrote:I've said

Hambydammit wrote:

I've said it before, and I'll say it until someone hears it.  The problem is not with 18 year olds drinking.  It's a problem with the transportation system.  If there's no alternatives to driving, people of all ages will drive.

 

 

While that is correct it still misses the point public transport is not and will never be viable in low density populations, the answer to me is not to keep cars but to get rid of low density populations (as in move not shoot)

 


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Quote:While that is correct

Quote:
While that is correct it still misses the point public transport is not and will never be viable in low density populations, the answer to me is not to keep cars but to get rid of low density populations (as in move not shoot)

I can't argue with the logic, but I can suggest that this is probably a pipe dream.  People like living in sparcely populated areas.

Even in rural areas, there are ways to minimize drunk driving.  The most obvious is zoning ordinances.  If you allow bars to be built near neighborhoods, you allow more people to walk or bike.  (Granted, most places in the U.S., you'll get a BUI, but that's besides the point.  That's an easy law to amend.)  As it is, most small towns work really hard to force bars as far away from churches, schools, and neighborhoods as possible, citing "community morals" as the reason.  That's just plain bullshit.  Again, promoting responsible drinking will eliminate most of the problems associated with alcohol.  Make it easy for people to behave well, and they will generally do so.

While I'm on the subject, what possible constitutional justification is there for giving churches a "safe zone" around their property where nobody can build a bar?  Talk about special treatment!

 

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One way that has generally

One way that has generally been successful in the UK has actually been to change the way people think via tv campaigning its been one of the few government propaganda/information programs that have actually worked.

In the UK often a person who walks past another person being beaten up they won't even bother calling the police, been cases of people just lying bleeding to death in the road and no one doing anything BUT

drinking driving is generally seen to be even worse than that, people call the police if they spot a drunk person getting into car (the 'grassing' stygma just doesnt seem to apply) of course in the UK we have a big advantage for most people in the UK driving is a luxury (an extremely useful one) but in most cases its not a must.

Banning someone from driving for for 12 months is mandatory for a 1st offence drink driving offence (jail is also an option), its 3 years for a 2nd offence (not to mention a very high chance of doing time). It's possible here because in some cases it might cost you your job its not likely to make it that hard to get another one

 

 

 

 


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I've never understood why

I've never understood why they would trust you to vote before you can be trusted to drink responsibly.

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