Argument: Alcohol harms adolescents more than adults.

Issue Report: Lowering US drinking age from 21 to 18

Supporting quotes

“State’s drinking age should remain 21”. Star Tribune. April 5, 2008– “Studies of the still-developing teenage brain show that adolescents are more vulnerable than adults to the effects of alcohol on learning, memory and judgment. And those who begin drinking in their early teens are at greater risk to become alcoholics.”

“Drinking age saves lives, is good policy”. The Daily Tar Heel. 3 Oct. 2007– “Moritsugu cited science-based-research indicating that the adolescent brain is not fully developed until about 25 and that alcohol (even in small amounts) can cause damage to it. Knowing this, why would any intelligent, responsible adult entertain the notion of lowering the drinking age?”

“Why 21?”. 2Much2Lose, a non-profit dedicated to fighting under-age drinking – “Buzzed says we should look at what we do know about young brains – like the fact that they don’t finish developing until a person is around twenty-four years old. And one of the last regions to mature is intimately involved with the ability to plan and make complex decisions. Young brains are built to acquire new memories and are “built to learn.” Buzzed reports that, “It is no accident that people are educated in our society during their early years, when they have more capacity for memory and learning. However, with this added memory capacity may come additional risks associated with the use of alcohol.” Apparently on studies using animals, young brains are vulnerable to the dangerous effects of alcohol, especially on learning and memory function. If this is true of people, then young people who drink may be “powerfully impairing the brain functions on which they rely so heavily for learning.” So, in case there wasn’t enough pressure to perform at school, at your job, or just in life, alcohol can prevent your use of your own brain.”