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Gingersnap
08-19-2008, 10:03 AM
College presidents want drinking age lowered to 18

BY JENNIFER MALONEY | jennifer.maloney@newsday.com
August 19, 2008

College presidents from more than 100 schools across the country are calling on lawmakers to do something about binge drinking: Consider lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18.

"Twenty-one is not working," says the group's statement, signed by presidents from prominent colleges such as Dartmouth, Duke and Syracuse. "A culture of dangerous, clandestine 'binge drinking' - often conducted off-campus - has developed."

No Long Island schools are on the list, which includes Manhattan College in Riverdale, Ohio State, Tufts in Massachusetts and Colgate in upstate Hamilton.

Even before the presidents begin the public phase of their efforts, which might include newspaper ads in the coming weeks, they face sharp criticism.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving says lowering the drinking age would lead to more fatal car crashes. It accuses the presidents of misrepresenting research and looking for an easy way out of an inconvenient problem, and urges parents to think carefully about safety at colleges whose presidents have signed on.

"It's very clear the 21-year-old drinking age will not be enforced at those campuses," said Laura Dean-Mooney, national president of MADD.

(snip)

John McCardell, former president of Middlebury College in Vermont who started the initiative, cited research by Alexander Wagenaar, a University of Florida epidemiologist. But Wagenaar himself sides with MADD in the debate.

Some officials at local universities say lowering the drinking age would have little impact.

"From the research studies that I've seen ... 50 percent of the students who are drinking have had their first drink before they're 17," said Jenny Hwang, associate dean and director for prevention and outreach at Stony Brook University. "So I don't know that changing the age from 21 to 18 would make much of a difference."

Hofstra University spokeswoman Melissa Connolly said in a statement that there "doesn't now appear to be enough data to conclude that lowering the age would lead to less rather than more drinking."

But a national discussion, she said, might lead to some constructive suggestions.

So, what do you guys think about this? I couldn't afford to be a hopeless alcoholic in college. Do kids have that much more money now or what? Also, I didn't have the time for it - working, early classes, etc. So, what's different now or is it different? :confused:

Diplomas For Drunks (http://www.newsday.com/news/printedition/longisland/ny-lidrin195806802aug19,0,4346240.story)

linda22003
08-19-2008, 10:09 AM
I don't see the big deal. It was 18 when I was in college.

Sonnabend
08-19-2008, 10:10 AM
It's been 18 here for forty years. :D

(Longer...)

wilbur
08-19-2008, 10:51 AM
So, what do you guys think about this? I couldn't afford to be a hopeless alcoholic in college. Do kids have that much more money now or what?


Cheap beer.... Old Milwaukee's Best is cheaper than water.



Also, I didn't have the time for it - working, early classes, etc. So, what's different now or is it different? :confused:


You obviously didnt have your priorities straight ;)


Just on general principle it seems quite silly that we are able to legislate away a perfectly legal adult's right to drink a certain kind of beverage. Either change the law so that 21 is the age of legal adulthood, or let people drink from 18 and up.

It's a tired old point, but honestly its still worth repeating... we can send an 18 year old off to war, but we wont let one take a drink? Stupid.

Gingersnap
08-19-2008, 11:18 AM
Cheap beer.... Old Milwaukee's Best is cheaper than water.



You obviously didnt have your priorities straight ;)


Just on general principle it seems quite silly that we are able to legislate away a perfectly legal adult's right to drink a certain kind of beverage. Either change the law so that 21 is the age of legal adulthood, or let people drink from 18 and up.

It's a tired old point, but honestly its still worth repeating... we can send an 18 year old off to war, but we wont let one take a drink? Stupid.

I agree that adults can do any legal activity but would a change make a difference in the drinking culture of schools? That's what I'm curious about.

As a side note, I really didn't have parties as a priority in school but none of the other alpha geeks did either and we only cared about impressing each other. The most notorious boozers during undergrad (at my school, at least) were the education majors and the nurses.

linda22003
08-19-2008, 11:26 AM
So, what do you guys think about this? I couldn't afford to be a hopeless alcoholic in college. Do kids have that much more money now or what?

You bought your own drinks? :rolleyes:

biccat
08-19-2008, 11:49 AM
Just on general principle it seems quite silly that we are able to legislate away a perfectly legal adult's right to drink a certain kind of beverage. Either change the law so that 21 is the age of legal adulthood, or let people drink from 18 and up.
Or that there are rules about how old you can be to have a certain job. I mean, that's beyond stupid, amirite?

noonwitch
08-19-2008, 12:00 PM
I never had any problems getting hold of alcohol when I was in college and the drinking age was 21. Of course, the age had gone up only a few years before that, so they were not as efficient about enforcement as they appear to be these days.

I'm always torn on this issue. I do think on one hand that if you are old enough to serve in the military, sign contracts, vote, and so on at 18, you should also be able to drink. On the other hand, I remember that after Michigan raised the age, drunk-driving fatalities decreased substantially.

So, my overall opinion is that if you are a college student between the ages of 18-20 and you can't get hold of alcohol, you probably are not smart enough to be drinking anyways.

FeebMaster
08-19-2008, 12:02 PM
So, what do you guys think about this?

18 is still too high.



I couldn't afford to be a hopeless alcoholic in college. Do kids have that much more money now or what?

Really, really cheap/bad beer/liquor.


Also, I didn't have the time for it - working, early classes, etc. So, what's different now or is it different? :confused:

Classes. LOL

Cold Warrior
08-19-2008, 12:03 PM
I don't see the big deal. It was 18 when I was in college.

For me as well, although the voting age was 21.

wilbur
08-19-2008, 12:20 PM
So, my overall opinion is that if you are a college student between the ages of 18-20 and you can't get hold of alcohol, you probably are not smart enough to be drinking anyways.

Good point.

YupItsMe
08-19-2008, 12:37 PM
So far I think everyone here is missing the point. It's not about 18 yr olds drinking. It's about 15 and 16 yr olds drinking. It was much easier for 15 and 16 yr olds to find an 18 yr old to buy them booze. Probably some kid still in high school with them. By the time they're 21 there's a "distance" between them and the young minors. The hope is that the 21 year old might have picked up enough common sense that he knows what a bad idea it is to supply minors.

MstrBlue
08-19-2008, 08:58 PM
I agree with the premise that lowering the drinking age to 18 again, will cause greater problems with even younger drinkers.
As has been stated, it would encourage the 15-17 year-old crowd to approach the 18 year olds to get them liquor. As if that would be a problem for them... it never was that big of a deal when the drinking age was 18 in the past.

Even though I personally think that the age should stay at 21, there is one group of people, that should be able to enjoy the drinking age of 18, and it is not the college crowd.
In my own opinion, many (not all) 18 year old college students are already giddy with the freedom of being on their own, and have enough to deal with, establishing their independence from their parents. They do not need the added distraction and confusion that alcohol offers.

However, I think that anyone in the military should be able to drink on-post at the age of 18.
If they are old enough to enlist in the military, and thereby willing to die for their country, then they should be able to buy and enjoy a damned drink!

LibraryLady
08-19-2008, 09:06 PM
I grew up with NO age limit. I recall my Dad sending me to buy Cutty Sark Scotch when I was 12 or 13.
I rarely drink and it was never denied to me when I was growing up.
My daughter starts college this week in a DRY county. The town where I live has the closest liquor store - kids are on that road constantly.

Phillygirl
08-19-2008, 09:19 PM
I don't agree with lowering the drinking age. I think it will simply lead to more kids drinking even earlier.

I'm still constantly amazed that neither I nor any of my friends died while in college. The binge drinking was out of control. My freshman year, while the drinking age was 21, the only rule against drinking on campus was no kegs. Silly rule, and of course we broke that as well. When drinking was banned the following year, it simply meant that more kids got fake id's to get into the bars, and more kids left campus to drink, thereby increasing the probability that they would be victims of some crime, or commit other crimes themselves.

Nubs
08-19-2008, 09:24 PM
I think they should lower it

This will allow more people in college to drink. This will help weed out those whom most likely should not be there in the first place.

To quote Judge Smails " The world needs ditch diggers too"

lurkalot
08-19-2008, 10:24 PM
I agree that adults can do any legal activity but would a change make a difference in the drinking culture of schools? That's what I'm curious about.

As a side note, I really didn't have parties as a priority in school but none of the other alpha geeks did either and we only cared about impressing each other. The most notorious boozers during undergrad (at my school, at least) were the education majors and the nurses.
ahem
:o

Elspeth
08-19-2008, 11:56 PM
So, what do you guys think about this? I couldn't afford to be a hopeless alcoholic in college. Do kids have that much more money now or what? Also, I didn't have the time for it - working, early classes, etc. So, what's different now or is it different? :confused:

Diplomas For Drunks (http://www.newsday.com/news/printedition/longisland/ny-lidrin195806802aug19,0,4346240.story)

There's a lot to be said about being able to drink openly at 18; the school can monitor student drinking better (since neither the school nor the students have to be in denial) and many kids are less likely to binge in secret if they can drink openly, meaning they are less likely to develop the kind of secretive, binge habits that sometimes lead to alcoholism. It might be safer all around to have the drinking age reduced.

The negative side, of course, is that a drinking age of 18 means that some seniors in high school could legally buy alcohol for their younger siblings and friends. This "trickle down" effect in high school was the reason that a lot of states went to 21. High school students drinking and driving were a major problem. I don't know if the figures have gone down any, but I know that MADD was heavily involved in getting that drinking age changed.

Eyelids
08-20-2008, 01:35 AM
Even though I personally think that the age should stay at 21, there is one group of people, that should be able to enjoy the drinking age of 18, and it is not the college crowd.

In my own opinion, many (not all) 18 year old college students are already giddy with the freedom of being on their own, and have enough to deal with, establishing their independence from their parents. They do not need the added distraction and confusion that alcohol offers.

However, I think that anyone in the military should be able to drink on-post at the age of 18.
If they are old enough to enlist in the military, and thereby willing to die for their country, then they should be able to buy and enjoy a damned drink!

That is fucking bullshit.

MstrBlue
08-20-2008, 02:07 AM
That is fucking bullshit.

Concise and to the point.

Still, to what statement to you object?

nightflight
08-20-2008, 02:26 AM
That is fucking bullshit.


Of course you would think that.

Eyelids
08-20-2008, 02:45 AM
Oh hey let's create a warrior class that is deemed superior by the state! See how that works out...

That's some hardcore PRoC or NK shit.

linda22003
08-20-2008, 07:40 AM
[SIZE="3 My daughter starts college this week in a DRY county. The town where I live has the closest liquor store - kids are on that road constantly.[/SIZE]

I went to prep school in a dry TOWN. You should have seen the look on my father's face when he was told at the hotel in town that he could not get his customary Manhattan before dinner. :eek:

Phillygirl
08-20-2008, 07:52 AM
Oh hey let's create a warrior class that is deemed superior by the state! See how that works out...

That's some hardcore PRoC or NK shit.

Yeah, wouldn't want those that are willing to die for their country have a beer or something.

noonwitch
08-20-2008, 08:35 AM
I'm still constantly amazed that neither I nor any of my friends died while in college. The binge drinking was out of control. My freshman year, while the drinking age was 21, the only rule against drinking on campus was no kegs. Silly rule, and of course we broke that as well. When drinking was banned the following year, it simply meant that more kids got fake id's to get into the bars, and more kids left campus to drink, thereby increasing the probability that they would be victims of some crime, or commit other crimes themselves.



I am surprised about the same thing with me and my college friends. I was in college from 1982-86 at a second-tier state university (Western Michigan), and it was a wild time. It was very easy to get hold of alcohol, and our dorms had a technical rule against it that was not enforced unless the situation was out of hand. I was in a sorority some of that time, and we drank a lot. I remember going to the house for a weekend a couple of weeks before school started in the fall, to get the house ready for fall rush. One of the sisters who was over 21 took us all to the liquor store to stock up on Friday, and I gave her my money and had her buy me 2 fifths of Southern Comfort. Both bottles were empty by Sunday morning-I shared with others, but, still, that was a lot of booze, and other people had bought beer, wine and liquor, too. That was just one weekend.

There were probably a couple of times when either me or one of my friends probably should have had our stomachs pumped. A couple of my friends experienced date rape, although they didn't think of it that way at the time (nor did I). It was just what happened when you drank too much with the wrong guy. I had a couple of close calls, but my friends and I usually had a buddy system going at parties.

I went to visit my sister at MSU a couple of years after I graduated, and I was amazed at the fact that they took it to even greater depths there. But then again, Michigan State is one of the biggest party schools there is. Anyone who's kids are going there should beware.

Zathras
08-20-2008, 08:53 AM
That is fucking bullshit.

Gee, what a surprise. Blinky thinks the truth is BS.

Phillygirl
08-20-2008, 09:21 AM
I am surprised about the same thing with me and my college friends. I was in college from 1982-86 at a second-tier state university (Western Michigan), and it was a wild time. It was very easy to get hold of alcohol, and our dorms had a technical rule against it that was not enforced unless the situation was out of hand. I was in a sorority some of that time, and we drank a lot. I remember going to the house for a weekend a couple of weeks before school started in the fall, to get the house ready for fall rush. One of the sisters who was over 21 took us all to the liquor store to stock up on Friday, and I gave her my money and had her buy me 2 fifths of Southern Comfort. Both bottles were empty by Sunday morning-I shared with others, but, still, that was a lot of booze, and other people had bought beer, wine and liquor, too. That was just one weekend.

There were probably a couple of times when either me or one of my friends probably should have had our stomachs pumped. A couple of my friends experienced date rape, although they didn't think of it that way at the time (nor did I). It was just what happened when you drank too much with the wrong guy. I had a couple of close calls, but my friends and I usually had a buddy system going at parties.

I went to visit my sister at MSU a couple of years after I graduated, and I was amazed at the fact that they took it to even greater depths there. But then again, Michigan State is one of the biggest party schools there is. Anyone who's kids are going there should beware.

We would have keg races freshman year...8 girls, 8 guys...2 quarter kegs. Which keg kicked first. And then we went to the bar. It was bad. I think lowering the age would only encourage the binge drinking at a younger age.

But I do believe, by and large, that those in the military are a bit more responsible (hey...they're 18 and in the military, not at Drunken U for 4 years of partying). And I do think in light of the responsibility and obligation that we put on them, that they deserve some perks. I also think that the consequences from their CO for out of control behavior is a whole lot harsher than anything an RA could think up.

Rebel Yell
08-20-2008, 09:51 AM
I got so drunk in Palma, Spain that I went blind. I had always heard of "Blind Drunk", but thought it was an expression. I threw up while "being friendly" with a female from the boat. Don't worry, she was on top.:D We finished up and when I got up, all i could see was a blur. It was like looking through really thick glass. She had to lead me by hand back to the liberty bus. Good times, good times.

Gingersnap
08-20-2008, 09:52 AM
It seems like we really have two questions here: should the legal age be dropped and is the college-crowd drinking culture out of hand?

The first and last time I got blind drunk was at college (no surprise there) and it put me off heavy drinking for quite a while. Looking back on it, drinking was not as big a deal for my crowd as it was for a lot of other students. That said, Mr. Snaps is in Higher Ed and drinking does seem to be getting a lot worse - people are drinking more often, they are bypassing beer for the hard stuff, and drinking to the point of black out is common. :(

biccat
08-20-2008, 10:05 AM
I went to visit my sister at MSU a couple of years after I graduated, and I was amazed at the fact that they took it to even greater depths there. But then again, Michigan State is one of the biggest party schools there is. Anyone who's kids are going there should beware.
I don't know if it is one of the biggest party schools, but there is a lot of drinking that goes on. I visited a friend's frat, and we filled up one of the member's room with beer cans (15 of us or so). And I'm not talking about just on the floor either. They had windows that opened over the door, we had to toss the last few in.

The issue is compounded with certain majors (Business) only having classes through Thursday. Big discounts on those nights.

But I think that the amount of drinking increased exponentially when I got to graduate school. The depravity there was far worse than undergrad.

YupItsMe
08-20-2008, 01:07 PM
That is fucking bullshit.



Maybe I can clarify it for you a little better. A majority of people under the age of 21 are idiots. That's why they vote for libs, when they remember to vote. The exception to the rule, being servicemen who are exposed to the realities of life and mature much sooner. That's why they vote for conservatives. Hope that clarifies things for you.