Debating the Drinking Age In Iowa

The debate over legal age 21 has spread to the cornfields of Iowa, where last week seven 19 year-olds were arrested for possessing alcohol at a bonfire party at the home of the Chief Justice of the Iowa Supreme Court. Iowa law allows 18 to 20 year olds to drink in a private residence if they have written permission from their parent or legal guardian, which some of the firegoers apparently lacked. An article in today’s Des Moines Register notes that

the spotlight shining on what happened at the [Chief Justice’s] 29-acre property outside Grimes illuminates a divide among parents: Follow the letter of the law, prohibiting alcohol consumption by 18 to 20 year-olds under most circumstances, or, facing the reality that many young adults will drink, allow it with supervision.

We hope that parents in Iowa and across the country will take this question seriously. When a law is so routinely violated, even in the homes of our highest officials: is that law really working? At CR we believe that state legislators, in Iowa and elsewhere, should be able to look for new solutions to the problem of binge drinking among young people without fearing retaliation from the federal government.

One Response to “Debating the Drinking Age In Iowa”

  1. Edwin Says:

    The drinking age must be lowered to 18 along with an alcohol education program. Since 18, 19, and 20 year olds are adults, they must have the privilege of consuming alcohol responsibly. It’s ironic that the bonfire occured on the property of a person representing the judicial branch. Although Iowa doesn’t allow for those aged 18-20 to consume alcohol, the written permission requirement is one of oppression. The solutions to binge drinking among young adults is to lower the drinking age and implement alcohol education.