In 1984, in response to what was seen as a rise in drinking and driving incidents, the United States passed the National Minimum Drinking Age Act. It required states to raise their drinking age to 21 or face a cut in national transportation funding. By 1988, every state complied and, across America, it became 18 to party, 21 to drink.
I’m of the mindset that the drinking age should be something like 50. You contribute to society for 30 years, you learn to become a responsible adult, and then, as old age sets in, you get to drink.
I’m in the way minority there. I know that. Many, many people think that the drinking age should be lowered to 18, the conceit being that if you are old enough to be drafted into military service, old enough to fight in a war, you should be old enough to drink a beer.
I can’t argue with that rational (save for the fact that teenagers are idiots and should not be trusted with booze).
One state senator so firmly believes in the right of our young men and women in uniform to drink that he has introduced a bill that would let members of our Armed Forces be served at the age of 18. From Delaware Online:
Eighteen-year-old active duty service members can vote, smoke and fight for their country, but they can’t have a drink – a Maryland Senator is looking to change that.
A bill proposed by Sen. Ron Young, D-Frederick, would allow active duty service members who are at least 18-years-old to be served beer and wine.
The service member would be required to show their armed forced identification at the bar or restaurant where they are being served.
The bill doesn’t allow for service members to drink hard liquor, which seems like an arbitrary decision to me, but whatever.
Of course, if it passed in Maryland, the state might lose federal funding for roads and highways. So there’s that. A hearing on the bill is scheduled for this Friday.