Should Minnesota Lower the Legal Drinking Age to 18?
A bill has been introduced into the Minnesota House of Representatives that aims to lower the legal drinking age back to 18. It would mark the first change to the law in nearly 30 years.
Over the past 50 years, the legal drinking age has fluctuated between 18 and 21 in Minnesota, changing on several occasions. The last change came back in 1986, when it was raised to the current legal age of 21.
Minneapolis DFL state representative Phyllis Kahn is the author of the bill. If made into law, it would allow 18-year-olds to buy drinks in bars and restaurants, but would not allow them to buy alcohol in liquor, grocery or convenience stores.
Kahn’s main reason for advocating for the change is the problem of binge drinking on college campuses. Kahn believes that giving younger people opportunities to drink in public settings will help them learn how to treat alcohol more responsibly.
Other proponents of the bill contend that anyone who is old enough to go to war and fight for their country should be considered old enough to drink legally. Currently, it is legal to join the military at age 18.
This isn’t the first time this type of legislation has been introduced in Minnesota in recent history. However, past efforts to push it through were unsuccessful.
What do you think of the idea? Should 18-year-olds be allowed to drink alcohol at bars and restaurants? Would it do anything to help curb binge drinking? Should it be limited to just bars and restaurants?