The Amethyst Initiative was started to open academic debates on the effectiveness of the 21 age drinking law. It was started in an attempt to curb binge drinking and alcohol related incident on college campuses. According to the department of justice half our youth (18-20) drink; half of those that do drink are binge drinkers who consume the vast majority of alcohol consumed by underage drinkers. The same report also claims that teens that drink heavily are more likely to develop alcohol dependency later in life. The number of underage drinkers may have gone down, but risky drinking behaviors have increased due to the age law. Jennifer
Nelson, a student at MIT, claims that this behavior is attributed to the taboo of under aged drinking. Some supporters of lowering the age believe the issue is about freedom. UPenn
President Amy Gutmann supports this claim, saying if people can join the military or vote they should be able to drink. To put this argument into perspective, one fifth of every service member who died in the Iraq war was never old enough to legally drink alcohol. If an 18 year old adult is mature enough to vote, which is the most important responsibility we have as
Americans, then they should be old enough to buy a beer.
Whenever this issue is brought to debate the argument becomes muddled and loses is value.
Anyone who partakes in the debate is vilified by organizations that do not want to see the law changed. These groups bring no logic to the debate, they choose to play on the public’s emotion; an effective way to kill any debate. Any stats that support their claim are not clearly examined; James M. Wilsterman, a Crimson associate editorial chair, claims that the reduction of injury and fatality due to