Glenn Reynolds on Lowering the Drinking Age
Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Glenn Instapundit Reynolds writes about correcting (yet another!) Reagan-era policy mistake—the tying of federal highway dollars to raising a given state's to 21 years of age. Reynolds notes that current policy proposals to let active-duty military kids down shots as well as take them isn't enough. There's just no good goddamn reason that 21 is the age. Certainly not from any safety standpoint:
Defenders of the status quo claim that highway deaths have fallen since the drinking age was raised to 21 from 18, but those claims obscure the fact that this decline merely continued a trend that was already present before the drinking age changed—and one that involved every age group, not merely those 18-21. Research by economist Jeffrey A. Miron and lawyer Elina Tetelbaum indicates that a drinking age of 21 doesn't save lives but does promote binge drinking and contempt for the law.
It's simply pathetic that here we are in the 21st century—a time of Hover Cars and Cloud Cities—and we're still stuck in a Just Say No moment that demonstrably fails to deliver precisely what it claims to: less destructive behavior on the part of kids.
Must-watch video: Reason.tv's Is It Time to Lower the Drinking Age from 21?