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Legal drinking in the U.S.A

Posted by Word Camel on October 29, 2003

In Reply to: Legal drinking in the U.S.A posted by Lotg on October 29, 2003

: : : : : : : : The importance of single young people living with their parents as a market for the Irish billion-euro food-service industry has been highlighted in new consumer research compiled by the Irish Food Board.

: : : : : : : : SLOPs, according to the researchers, are Singles Living Off Parents, and they have been identified as prime drivers in the take-away sector.
: : : : : : : : - The Irish Times, 29 October 2003

: : : : : : : In a news article recently, it stated that the new age of adulthood is now 26 -- not 18 (voting age in the U.S.) or 21 (legal drinking age in most states). As the mother of two 20-year-olds, I'm sorry to hear that.

: : : : : : And, as the father of a 26 year old, I live in hope.

: : : : : : Another of those terms for groups of children is boomerang kids. This one is for children who leave home as adults only to return a few years later when times get hard. I've heard that in Sweden this group has got their own back on their parents for name calling. They call middle age parents the 'flashing twelve hundreds', claiming that when they return home that's what all the digital clocks on cookers, videos etc. look like as the parents don't understand how to reset them.

: : : : : ".Gone is the notion that adulthood officially started at 18, when one typically graduated from high school - or even 21, the modern-day age limit for drinking alcohol. Now many experts simply consider those markers along the way. And it appears that Americans agree. A University of Chicago survey, released earlier this year, found that most think adulthood begins at age 26. '"It's not like one day you wake up and you're an adult. It's much more gradual,' says developmental psychologist Jeffrey Arnett. A professor at the University of Maryland, he is writing a book on what he calls 'emerging adulthood' - the period between age 18 to 25." From "Rethinking The Age Of Adulthood," CBS News online at, 2003.

: : : : But the legal age of adulthood is still 18 in the US. That is, at 18 you can legally enter contracts and things of that nature.

: : : Is it really though? You can't drink at 18.

: : has an article about the legal drinking age in the U.S. -- it's 21 in every state. In the 70s some states lowered the legal age to 18. But it turned out to be a bad idea. The federal Uniform Drinking Age Act ensured that all states were bumped up to 21.

: : Kids can get credit cards at 18. That's turned out to be a bad idea too.

: The legal drinking age in Australia is 18 and I can't see why that's a problem. I think it works here OK. It was 21 when I was growing up but it changed, I don't know, probably 25 or more years ago. Growing up in the bush, the legal drinking age was reasonably academic, cos the boys would still have plenty of alcohol at barbies and beasts on the spit no matter what age they were.

I have always thought that whether someone is is able to manage alcohol consumption isn't so much a matter of age as much as maturity. It's also a matter of social expectations. If we expect less of young people - or anyone else for that matter - they seldom fail to disappoint. That's as true with credit cards as with alcohol.