At one time in the not too distant past, the drinking age in America was 18 with the logic being that if young men, at the time, could be conscripted to fight at that age in the jungles of Vietnam, they should be able to drink at home. Then, in 1984, Congress raised the age to 21 as a way to combat drunk-driving fatalities. States were coerced into doing so in order not to jeopardize receiving highway funds. Yes, drunk driving deaths did go down, but was the raising of the drinking age the reason? Our guest, Scott Johnston, author of ‘Campusland’, makes a strong case that other factors were more important and that kids on campus, his main focus, kept on drinking no matter the law. And that this prohibition changed the campus culture for the worse. We have a great exchange about the issue and learn some stunning facts. Did you know that of 190 countries, on 12 have drinking ages as high as ours? Or that 100 college presidents have signed on to a letter encouraging the lowering of the drinking age? Or that a former President of Yale University used to welcome students with an open bar? Johnston thinks Republicans should lead this charge. He explains why. Good luck convincing ‘Martini Mitch’.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download