[CR] Week in Review

On Wednesday, [CR] President John McCardell traveled to Boston College to debate the drinking age with James Fell of the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation and a panel of campus administrators. He told BC Heights reporter Carrie McMahon that “cultural attitudes change over time. And current policy for the drinking age has locked us into the culture of 1984.” Speaking of [CR] events, next Wednesday, John McCardell will participate in an online webinar for college health professionals sponsored by Screening for Mental Health’s College Response program. If you’d like to take part, please register for National Alcohol Screening Day – you’ll receive access to the webinar next week and a package of other helpful materials. And if you’re interested in bringing a [CR] representative to your campus this spring, please e-mail us. In the meantime, check out these headlines for the latest news from around the country.

Stories this week:

Tuscon Citizen contributor Carolyn Classen believes it may be time to consider a lower drinking age that would bring the consumption of alcohol by 18-20 year-olds out of the shadows. She wrote, “I am advocating the choice of being able to drink alcohol, which can be done in moderation in the privacy of one’s home, or not at all– if you choose not to drink for religious or health reasons. And I don’t think anyone should drink over the legal limit & drive a motor vehicle. It would certainly eliminate the sneaking around and binge drinking that American college students go through to drink alcohol for 3 years before they turn 21.”

Marc Ferris of the Fairfield Weekly offered a blunt statement on the difficulties of enforcing Legal Age 21 in his article on local binge drinking incidents: “Trying to stop underage drinking among college students is like shoveling sand against the tide.”

Drake University Times-Delphic columnist Ryan Price doesn’t think Legal Age 21 is working very well. Why did he choose to take up the issue? “The reason I am writing about the drinking age today is because I am worried about the friends we have taken care of after they drink to oblivion. I am writing because I appreciate our peers’ health. I am writing because I want to see mature handling of alcohol in our society. I am writing because we can kill others for our country, but we can’t have a beer as we write research papers on the complexities of pharmaceutical drugs, business ethics or quantum physics.”

In other news…

Maryland lawmakers have ruled out an increase in the state’s per-drink alcohol tax to fund services for addiction treatment programs and other initiatives, according to the Washington Post.

Iowa City’s proposed 21-only ordinance for local bars has the community buzzing. The University of Iowa’s Faculty council has endorsed the plan, but Daily Iowan columnist Beau Elliot and the paper’s editorial board argue that the proposal won’t do much to change behavior. What do you think?

Remember: today is the last day of voting on Change.org, so help us crack the 1,000 vote barrier before the contest closes!

One Response to “[CR] Week in Review”

  1. Edwin Says:

    The drinking age must be lowered to 18 along with education and licensing. It’s good that John McCardell went to Boston to engage in debate. Carolyn Classen is correct in that the ageist drinking age must be repealed. Ryan Price is also correct that the drinking age of 21 has caused and is causing consequences to the health of young women and young men. The Iowa City council is obligated to abandon the ageist proposal. There’s shame for the University of Iowa Faculty council for supporting the ageist proposal.