Underage Drinking and the Risk

Searcy (LP) The average American teen is likely to take their first drink of alcohol at around age 14. Each year around 5,000 teen deaths are alcohol related, such as car crashes, alcohol poisoning, falls, burns, drownings, and suicide. Naively reading the facts above, a person would not think that the legal drinking age would be 21. Teens completely disregard the law everyday, whether it is out of boredom, rebellion, or just to look cool among their peers, it happens often. Drinking is restricted for anyone under the age of 21 due to the fact that brains under that age are more vulnerable. The human brain does not fully develop until age 25. Alcohol alters the development and affects the brain’s structure and function later in life. Also, studies show people who drink before the age of 15 are four times more likely to become alcoholics.

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Underage alcohol usage is illegal.

The harsh reality we must face as a student body is underage drinking at SHS is an ignored problem. We all know it happens but nobody ever talks about or tries to confront the problem. When we hear our peers talking about their wild nights over the weekend but nobody ever tries to warn them of the risk. They just listen and don’t speak up so they do not seem lame. A Searcy High senior, (who asked to remain nameless) recalls a time at a bonfire where he should have stopped his friends from binge drinking and putting themselves in danger. “We were all just hanging out around a fire and started inviting a whole bunch of people, and somehow alcohol started being passed around.” the senior stated. When things took a turn for the worse things started getting out of hand. “My buddies started tipping ’em back and started to get pretty messed up. I had a bad feeling about it but I thought this was not the first time they had been like this they would be fine.” Little did this SHS student know things were about to take a turn for the worse. ” Next thing I know my friend stumbled into the fire and burned his leg pretty bad.”

This is just one account of alcohol and irresponsibility at Searcy High. Luckily his friend was not burned worse but it could have been completely ignored if the law was not broken. The fact that a teen drinks once and nothing happens makes them feel as if nothing bad could happen just like he thought that night. The risks of underage drinking are real and deadly, remember this as prom and graduation parties are right around the corner.

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