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There are a few opinions on the subject of the Drinking Age in America. More young men and women oppose the federal law that would lower the drinking age to 18 than support it. Older Americans and men are divided on the issue. Most people in favor of a higher legal drinking age are men, while about half of both groups are opposed to a lower age limit. This polling data highlights the skepticism about lowering the drinking age in America.
The Drinking Age in America is 21 years old, but there are a few exceptions. Some states have higher minimum ages, but they lump wine, beer, and spirits into one category. For example, Colorado lumps wine and hard liquor together. Other states allow underage drinking at non-alcohol-selling premises, but they require parental consent. Other states have different rules about underage drinking, and some allow it for religious and educational purposes.
The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) tracks the number of deaths due to alcohol abuse in college students. They also report 97,000 cases of sexual assault by underage drinkers. One twenty-one-year-old college student in Florida believes the Drinking Age in America affects the binge drinking behavior of teenagers. She has seen a marked difference between drinking rates at parties attended by her Hispanic and American friends.
It has been estimated that raising the drinking age in the United States to 21 years will reduce the number of road accidents caused by youths. Intoxicated youths are more prone to making poor decisions and may not have the concentration to drive a car. Therefore, the National Minimum Drinking Age in America was enacted to protect the public from drunk driving. While it has made a significant difference in drunk driving fatalities, it does not mean that it will eliminate all alcohol-related traffic accidents.
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