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Debate on Drinking Age a Real Rager

Published October 8, 2008 at 5:59 p.m.

Continuing with the recent drinking theme, check out Mike Ives' article in this week's Seven Days about the Amethyst Initiative, a coalition of more than 100 college presidents fighting to open a debate on the wisdom of the 21+ drinking law.

The Amethyst group is facing serious opposition from Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), The Governor’s National Highway Safety Association, The National Transportation Safety board and others, who all argue that the enactment of the 1984 Minimum Drinking Age Act has saved thousands of lives and should remain on the books. 

The initiative had significant support from three Vermont College presidents from Marlboro College, Norwich University and Champlain College until an AP story spread the fear that the institutions would be seen as wholly supporting the lowering of the drinking law to 18, though they only want to see an open debate.

John McCardell, former Middlebury College prez and founder of the Amethyst Initiative (pictured), plans to ask Congress to repeal a clause in the law that associates the 21+ drinking age with highway funding.

Photo by Matthew Thorsen.

Speaking of College Blog