The Legal Drinking Age in different Countries

What age is the right age to be allowed to drink an alcoholic beverage? This is a question that has many different answers according to different countries, regions, and individuals.

In the United States, the legal drinking age is 21, which is alot higher than it is in most other countries. In most other countries in the world the legal age is 18, and in still others it is only 16. Why the discrepancy? The US maintains that a higher legal drinking age will keep our youth safe from even more drunk driving accidents than we have now. This would seem to make sense considering that most driving accidents are caused by the young and by the elderly, however the youths that are usually involved in such accidents are usually found to be inebriated anyway. Is it possible that perhaps the law that makes it harder for youth to possess alcohol only increases their desire for such a product? Take into consideration that during the US alcohol prohibition in the 1930s, even adults found the substance appealing to the point of breaking the law on a national level. As humans what we cannot have always appeals to us. If we changed the US national drinking age to 18, perhaps it would not be as much of an act of defiance for a youth to consume a bottle of alcohol.

In addition to the above I must mention that the legal age of adulthood in the US is 18. At 18 a person can be thrown in jail, get a credit card, die for their country, and smoke without question. Why is alcohol so different? Isn’t it as though we are saying to the youth, “Yes, you are an adult, however you are not adult ENOUGH to be trusted with alcohol.” Isn’t it a bit insulting to deny a young adult the same liberties that are granted to everyone else only a few years older than them. I believe that the other countries, such as England, have it right, and that most countries, certainly the US, should change the drinking age to 18.