This article reviews the case for a legal drinking age from the time of the repeal of Prohibition to the Surface Transportation Act of 1984. It points out how the impetus for lowering the drinking age had little or nothing to do with alcohol-related issues and how it was supported by leadership in the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Momentum for downward shifts in the drinking age began to decline apparently when data began coming in from states who had opted for lower drinking ages. No state lowered its legal age after mid-1973 and in 1976, Minnesota began to reverse the trend by raising its legal age from 18 to 19. The impetus for a national drinking-age law began in New Jersey. Under new national legislation, beginning October 1, 1986, any state which allows youth under 21 years of age to purchase beer, wine or distilled spirits will lose a part of its federal highway construction money. A list is provided showing the estimated loss of federal highway funds for non-21 states.

  • Corporate Authors:

    American Business Men's Research Foundation

    Michigan National Tower, Suite 1208
    Lansing, MI  United States  48933
  • Publication Date: 1985

Media Info

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00399098
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
  • Report/Paper Numbers: HS-038 809
  • Files: HSL, USDOT
  • Created Date: Sep 30 1985 12:00AM