Why Is the Drinking Age 21?

Why Is the Drinking Age 21

On July 17th, 1984, The National Minimum Drinking Age Act was passed in the United States of America. According to this Act, the minimum drinking legal age is 21. Well, this age seems a bit arbitrary and random as one becomes legal at 18. Still, Congress didn’t pick it up randomly or just out of a hat but has picked it up due to a long-running story about the history of it being legal at the age of 21 in America.

18, 19, and 20 Ages Set as Legal Before

After the prohibition period in the 1930s, the legal drinking age was set to 21 years but it remained kind of steady only till 1971. The buzz was created when the legal age of voting was dropped to 18 instead of 21. People urged for making it legal to drink at 18. So, between 1970 and 1975, half of the states of America dropped their legal drinking age to 18, 19, and 20, respectively, to stay away from all the buzz created by the people.

18, 19, and 20, not set Legal for Medical Reasons

By the time the legal age for voting became 18, people had started to urge to make it legal to drink at the age of 18. This fuss went successful in making the legal age fall to 18 for drinking. This was a condition that was set by the people, not for any medical reasons. So, after this fall, the accidents and traffic issues started to rise. On further research, it came out that the downward fall of the legal age of drinking is the main cause of the accidents.

Backed to 21

As mentioned earlier, these accidents and injuries started to increase with time when the ages of drinking in legal fell to 18, 19, and 20. The country started to get worried about the situation, and it was hazardous because the situation went alarming, and the youth is the main asset of a country. So, in order to decrease these accidents and severe injuries, the government announced to back it up to 21 years of age according to the Act, which took place in 1984. Some states still couldn’t apply it till 1988, when the legal age of drinking in whole America went back to 21.

America is One of the Few Countries to Have a Legal Age of Drinking Above 18

Why Is the Drinking Age 21

Most countries around the world have made it clear that the drinking age that is legal for people is 18. Well, among the rest, only a few countries have a legal age of drinking above 18. Those countries include America, Japan, Iceland, and South Korea. There are some countries around the world where it is even legal to purchase Alcohol by a 16-year-old, like Belgium. 

Save Lives 

Your life is the main asset you have. You lose money, you earn them back, you fail a test, you pass it back, you fall on the road, and you stand up again, but once you have lost your life, you cannot get it back. So, this seems that life is the most precious thing you have. When in America, the legal age of drinking dropped downwards to 18, 19, and 20, fatal outcomes were observed. The age of 21 is a sound age to be legal for drinking, and it is due to the following reasons mentioned by Minimum Legal Drinking Age (MLDA) Lawa;

Fewer Crashes of Motor Vehicles

18 is an age when a person is full of enthusiasm and thinks of himself as someone who is above the clouds and can do anything that he wills for. This enthusiasm is marked with foolishness as most people commit the most embarrassing things during these years. So, when a person drinks at 18, he would be drunk as the drink affects more on younger people more and would ultimately crash cars and vehicles on his way.

At this age, people mostly go out and spend time with their friends and family, and the rate of crashing thus increases. After the age was set to 21, motor vehicle crashes dropped to a lower level, and fewer accidental deaths were observed after this.

Decrease in the Rate of Drinking

When the age of drinking would start from 18, more people would get permission to drink. Simultaneously, the rate of drinking would increase. When it was dropped to 18 in 1971, the rate of drinking rose to a great level making more drunk people in the country. After the induction of the law and Act of legal drinking in 1984, the drinking rate declined to 59% in 1985 for people between the age of 18 and 20, and in 1991, it fell to 40% for people of the same age group. 

Moreover, it was also observed that some people from the age group 21-25 also have stopped drinking because they couldn’t develop a habit of drinking by that age. The ratio of 21-25 aged drinkers in 1985 was 70%, and in 1991, it dropped significantly to 56%. This ratio is reduced even if it is legal to drink at the age of 21. This shows that if one were stopped at a young age, he would become better afterward.


Why do most people drink? Why they don’t stay happy? Well, the answer to these questions is that people who want to stay stress-free usually find alcohol as a way to remove stress, but as a result, they fall more into problems and become unhappy. Depression and anxiety increase and causes suicidal and homicidal thoughts with dependence on drugs. The Act of forming 21, the legal age for drinking, makes it easier for people to stay protected from all these thoughts.


Although 21 is the legal age for drinking in the USA, still it can never lessen the effects after drinking severities. If a person wants to stay fit and healthy, he should try to move on without any dependency on any sort of drug, including alcohol. The drunk you’ll get, the more fatal your survival will become. So it is better to eat fresh, healthy and consume the best for a fantastic and easy life.

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