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The Therapy Sessions
Saturday, June 26, 2004

The drinking age

Coors urges lower drinking age:
Colorado Republican Senate hopeful Pete Coors yesterday criticized the legal drinking age, chiding the federal government for coercing states into raising the age limit from 18 to 21.

Oh, I'll bet he does.

But jokes aside, I think the drinking age is ridiculous, and the way the government has gone about implementing it is heavy handed. The government forced states to raise drinking ages by withholding federal highway funds: we feds think it's a good idea, so we will force you to comply, regardless of what your voters and legislatures say.

I personally believe that people who can vote should be able to drink.

Drinking laws are often the first laws kids break, so they get a nice idea what it feels like to be a criminal. Why, by the age of eighteen, I was both a speeder and a drinker, and I was on my way to a life of "criminal" activity (and then I got married).

Still, drinking laws made college life a lot of fun: alcohol wasn't hard to get, and the illegality of acquiring it made it especially attractive.

I have two internal biases about law:

1. No one should make a law that can't be enforced. What's the point in making law that everyone breaks anyway? Prosecutions are unfair - because you have to target someone (like hapless Martha Stewart). The idea spreads the police are antagonists, not people who work for us.

2. Laws should be as simple as black and white. You should know - with absolute certainity - that you are breaking a law.

Laws should pass both tests.

Laws regarding drinking, speeding and drugs fail number 1.

Laws regrading campign finance and insider trading fail numbers 1 and 2.

All of them should be abolished or completely reworked.

Story via Instapundit.

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