The current legal drinking age of 21 in the United States is a source of disagreement among some Americans. It is higher than the age of majority in many states (18) and the drinking age in most other countries. However, the story of the age of alcohol consumption in America told a very different story. The legal drinking age is the minimum age to buy or drink alcoholic beverages. The minimum age for legal alcohol consumption may differ from the minimum age for purchase in some countries. 1933- Late 1960s: After prohibition. In December 1933, the 21st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, repealing the ban. Most states set their drinking age at 21, but some set it lower.
However, in many other Asian countries, alcohol laws do not exist or are very flexible. Cambodia, Macau and Vietnam do not have a minimum age to buy or consume alcohol. Congress passed the National Minimum Drinking Age Act in 1984, which sets the legal purchasing age at 21. Alcohol Policy Information System. National Minimum Drinking Age Act, 1984. alcoholpolicy.niaaa.nih.gov/the-1984-national-minimum-drinking-age-act health experts cite evidence that the age of 21 is necessary to protect young adults from alcohol dependence. States that have raised the minimum drinking age to 21 have seen a decrease in the number of car accidents. In Lithuania, it is illegal to sell, serve or provide alcoholic beverages to persons under the age of 20.
Prior to 1984, some states had set the legal drinking age at 18, 19 or 20. In the late 1970s, some states raised their minimum age to combat the incidence of impaired driving. As can be seen in the table below, since the repeal of prohibition in 1933, there has been great volatility in the age of alcohol consumption in the states. Shortly after the 21st Amendment was ratified in December, most states set their purchasing age at 21, which was the voting age at the time. Most of these limits remained constant until the early 1970s. From 1969 to 1976, about 30 states lowered their purchasing age, usually to 18. This was largely due to the fact that the voting age was lowered from 21 to 18 with the passage of the 26th Amendment in 1971. Many states began lowering their minimum drinking age, most in 1972 or 1973.    Twelve states have maintained their purchasing age at 21 since the repeal of prohibition and have never changed it. Most laws only apply to alcohol consumption in public places and not to alcohol consumption in private homes. Some countries also have a minimum age for certain beverages, such as distilled alcohol.
Today, there are those who say that the legal drinking age should be lowered to 18, arguing that if you can serve, fight and die for your country, you should be able to buy a beer. On the other hand, there are those on the other side of the debate who say so should be increased to 25, the point at which the adult brain reaches full development. Whatever your opinion on the subject, it is important to see how we got here. Why has the law changed? What does this mean for us today? The temperance movement gained momentum in the 1880s when several other states passed minimum drinking age laws. But the legal drinking age has not been set for medical reasons. France, Italy, Spain, Ireland and Greece all have a minimum drinking age of 18. The passage of the National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984 forced states to raise their legal age to buy or possess alcohol to 21 or risk losing millions of dollars in federal funds for highways. By 1988, all 50 states had increased their MLDA to 21. The average minimum age for drinking varies around the world. It ranges from 13 in Burkina Faso to a total ban on the sale and consumption of alcohol in Brunei. In Canada, there is no federal law setting a minimum age for drinking. Each province and territory can set its own legal drinking age.
However, when the legal drinking age dropped nationwide in the `70s, alarm bells began ringing, notes licensed clinical psychologist Suzette Glasner-Edwards, PhD, associate professor at UCLA`s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior. “Research conducted after this period strongly suggested that an increase in road accidents among young people was associated with this change in the legal drinking age,” she tells Teen Vogue. “As a result, citizen efforts have begun to push states to reinstate 21 as the legal minimum age.” Usually, when you check in at your hotel, an all-inclusive plan means you get a wristband. Use it to prove that you are over the legal age so you can order a drink easily and quickly. Despite these improvements, too many teenagers still drink. In 2012, 42% of Grade 12 students, 28% of Grade 10 students, and 11% of Grade 8 students reported drinking alcohol in the past 30 days. In the same year, approximately 24% of Grade 12 students, 16% of Grade 10 students, and 5% of Grade 8 students reported excessive drinking in the past two weeks. In the years following the National Minimum Drinking Age Act, alcohol consumption fell by 19 per cent among 18- to 20-year-olds and by 14 per cent among 21- to 25-year-olds. This was particularly interesting because research has shown that most minors report that alcohol is “fairly easy” or “very easy” to obtain. When it comes to alcohol, even small behavioral checks seem important, Glasner-Edwards says. “If it takes more effort, it saves the person some time to think about how important it is for them to drink at that time or to consider the possible negative consequences of alcohol consumption,” she explains. “It seems that these barriers are significant for young people to benefit from these minimum age laws.” The minimum drinking age in Alberta, Manitoba and Quebec is 18.
Canada`s other provinces and territories allow the legal purchase of alcohol at age 19. After that, most states set their drinking age at 21, although some lowered it. While there are calls for a further lowering of the current drinking age, the passage of the Drinking Age Act and the proliferation of lockdown systems for intoxicated offenders have contributed significantly to reducing rates of first-time and repeat offenders under the influence of alcohol. While some may disagree, these two decisions have saved lives and made our roads safer. We should all agree that this is a very good thing. In the United States, there have been proposals to change the legal drinking age. They haven`t gone far with lawmakers, making it unlikely that the minimum drinking age will change anytime soon. Raising the minimum drinking age has led to a decline in overall alcohol consumption among all young adults, even when alcohol is easily accessible. 1176-1919: No national drinking age. Prior to prohibition, the drinking age varied from state to state, with most states imposing no drinking age. * For established religious purposes;* If a person under twenty-one years of age is accompanied by a parent, spouse or guardian twenty-one years of age or older;* For medical purposes, if purchased as an over-the-counter drug or prescribed or administered by a physician, pharmacist, dentist, nurse, a hospital or an authorized medical facility;* In a private dwelling, which includes a residential dwelling and up to twenty contiguous hectares on which the dwelling belonging to the same person who owns it is situated;* the sale, handling, transport or service of supplying alcoholic beverages on the basis of the lawful ownership of an establishment or the lawful employment of a person under twenty-one years of age by a duly licensed producer, wholesaler or retailer of alcoholic beverages.
The repeal of prohibition by the 21st Amendment on December 5, 1933, allowed each state to establish its own laws on alcohol consumption. At the time, most states set the legal drinking age (MLDA) at 21. Students hate the age of alcohol consumption, not that they keep it. About four out of five students drink alcohol, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. And more than 90% of this alcohol is consumed by excessive alcohol consumption. All fifty states had raised their minimum drinking age to 21 by the summer of 1988. South Dakota and Wyoming were the last states to comply with the change. After prohibition, nearly all states introduced a legal drinking age (MLDA) of 21. However, between 1970 and 1975, 29 states lowered the MLDA to 18, 19 or 20, mostly in response to the change in voting age. Studies conducted at the time showed that motor vehicle accidents among young people increased as states lowered their MLDA. In addition, the “blood boundaries” between states with different MLDAs came to public attention after high-profile accidents in which underage teens drove to a neighboring state with a lower MLDA, drank legally, and crashed on their way home.
Stakeholders called on states to increase their MLDA to 21. Some did so in the late 1970s and early 1980s, but others did not. To promote a national drinking age, Congress enacted the National MLDA. A 1988 review by the U.S. General Accounting Office found that raising the drinking age reduced alcohol consumption among adolescents, driving after drinking among adolescents, and alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents among adolescents.