Story by Jordan Jabeck
In a society where 18-year olds are considered adults, some question why those citizens can fight for our country but not legally consume alcohol.
This has become a controversial issue ,and some believe the age limit should be lowered.
Molly Peterson, a senior health science major, said she feels the drinking age should be lowered.
“I believe the drinking age should be 18 years old. If an individual is old enough to make critical decisions for this country by voting for presidents or dying for this country, they should be able to drink a beer or glass of wine.” Peterson said. “I think that lowering the drinking age will encourage kids to drink responsibly.
“The ‘fun’ part of drinking underage is knowing that you are getting away with something. Sure, some celebrate 21 in a dangerous fashion, the idea of drinking responsibly starts at home. By lowering the drinking age to 18 years old, a majority of freshman will have had one year of drinking with the authority of their parents,” Peterson said.
Katie Clausen, agreed with Peterson.
“Personally, I feel the drinking age should be 18 years old. One gains the right to vote, sign contracts, enlist in the armed forces, get married without parental consent, serve jury duty, buy cigarettes or tobacco and be completely independent. They also face heavier risks if they get in trouble with the law,” Clausen said.
Some students at Drake University feel that there is a pressure to drink with the close proximity to bars on campus.
“I think that Drake knows that no matter what they say or do, there will still be underage drinking happening. So they do a good job at controlling and monitoring the drinking,” said Jordan Hyde, 21, public relations major.
Peterson said she feels the University does a good job of handling underage drinking.
“I don’t think it is the responsibility of the university to monitor drinking,” said Peterson. “Considering that we are a wet campus, drinking isn’t something that is necessarily frowned upon. I think the target topic of drinking is how to drink responsibly and recognize signs of alcohol poisoning and how to drink responsibly. The more a university tells it’s students it can’t do something, the more rebellion, I feel, will come of it.”
Sophomore Kim Hennen, 19, a public relations and psychology double major said she feels campus is a safe environment for students.
“I think Drake is a safe place to drink. However, I do not think that it necessarily enforces students staying away from bars. I know several people who are fully involved in this school that do not drink and even more involved people who do,” Hennen said. “It’s a personal preference, and no one here judges others for not going out,” Hennen said.
Hennen also compared the drinking age to other cultures.
“I think it’s important for people to take a look at other societies across the world and see how they are doing with their lowered drinking ages,” Hennen said. “I do realize that this has a lot to do with drinking and driving for America, but I feel as though it is unnecessary to wait until someone is a junior or even a senior in college until they are able to drink and do it responsibly.”
However, Peterson said she thinks the higher drinking age is backed up by medical support.
“Many people believe that the reason the drinking age should stay is due to when the brain fully develops. The brain doesn’t fully develop until age 25. Thus, the drinking age at 21 does less damage to the developing brain than a drinking age at 18, but if we learn to drink responsibly at a younger age, I think the same amount of damage will occur no matter what.” Peterson said.
“Regardless of the drinking age, people are going to continue to illegally consume alcohol,” said Alex Kramer, 19, finance major.