Arguing Cause Hamnes

Underage binge drinking has been increasingly becoming a major problem on college campuses. Since it's illegal for students to drink publicly, they've been doing it behind closed doors in a dangerous environment. The problem with college drinking is not necessarily the drinking itself, but the negative consequences that result from excessive drinking. There's been an increase in young adults binge drinking, getting alcohol poisoning and getting sexually assaulted at parties.

College drinking is extremely widespread: About four out of five college students drink alcohol. About half of college students who drink, also consume alcohol through binge drinking. Each year, drinking affects college students, as well as college communities, and families. 1,825 college students between the ages of 18 and 24 die each year from alcohol-related unintentional injuries. More than 690,000 students between the ages of 18 and 24 are assaulted by another student who has been drinking. More than 97,000 students between the ages of 18 and 24 are victims of alcohol-related sexual assault or date rape. 599,000 students between the ages of 18 and 24 receive unintentional injuries while under the influence of alcohol. About 25 percent of college students report academic consequences of their drinking including missing class, falling behind, doing poorly on exams or papers, and receiving lower grades overall. More than 150,000 students develop an alcohol-related health problem and between 1.2 and 1.5 percent of students indicate that they tried to commit suicide within the past year due to drinking or drug use.

  • Is it clear what I mean exactly?

Yes I think it's clear what I mean.
I'm not sure what they would be confused about in this paragraph.

  • How does the claim(s) in this paragraph relate to my main claim?

My main claim is that the drinking age should be lowered, this claim is stating how having the drinking age at 21 is causing a lot of trouble in the college campuses.

  • What support have I used to argue this claim? What links this support to my claim? (for these last two, you can underline the support and make bold the linkage if it is explicitly stated. If the linkage is unstated, write it out in this quote box.)

There could be many causes of why binge drinking among college students has increased, including the drinking age being 21. College students can't drink in a safe environment with supervision, so they go to unsupervised, dangerous parties where anything can happen.

Katy Carry, former White House speechwriter for President George H.W. Bush, states how in her day, there was no need for “pregaming” – binge drinking in private apartments or dorms before heading out in public. She remembers how they used to be able to have kegs out in the open on campus grounds and university police would regularly stroll through the fraternity parties, making sure everything was under control. She also believes that the reason why so many college kids are now taking prescription drugs is, along with binge drinking, part of the epidemic of pregaming. She states that because of binge drinking and drug abuse, there has been many sexual assaults and a culture where dangerous drinking has become the rule and not the exception. "I’d rather see my kids sipping beer out of a red Solo cup at a well-patrolled fraternity party than drinking shots and popping a Vicodin in someone’s basement off campus. Lowering the drinking age will help slow the need for pregaming and bring the college fake ID business to a dead stop. It can’t help but reduce the binge drinking, drug overdoses and sexual assaults."

Laurence Steinberg, Professor of Psychology at Temple University, states that "Having a drinking age of 21 has put colleges and universities in the difficult position of having to police a population of drinkers, half of whom are legally permitted to drink, and half of whom are not." "This leads to an enormous amount of illegal drinking on campus, which in turn leads to drinking in unregulated and unmonitored settings, where problem drinking is all too easy. A fraternity president can look the other way when someone funnels a bottle of vodka; a bartender will not — or if he does, he won’t be in business very long."

  • Is it clear what I mean exactly?

Yes I think it's clear what I mean.

  • Where might the reader be confused? What could be misleading or muddled?

I don't know where the reader would be confused.

  • How does the claim(s) in this paragraph relate to my main claim?

It's stating that college students are pregaming and drinking in unsafe environments because the drinking age prevents them from drinking legally in a supervised place.

  • What support have I used to argue this claim? What links this support to my claim? (for these last two, you can underline the support and make bold the linkage if it is explicitly stated. If the linkage is unstated, write it out in this quote box.)

There are other possible causes to binge drinking on campus. The transition to college requires major changes in every aspect of a student's life. Students are looking for new friends who will provide support and intimacy, and they are working to develop their identity as college students. Young adults are thinking about how others perceive them. It may be that students acquire ideas (from media and through social norms) that drinking moderate to large amounts in college will make them more fun and exciting to their peers. Adults and students alike participate in behaviors that they have the most positive attitudes towards. In college there is often support from peers for drinking; and the more a student perceives others as drinking heavily or approving of heavy alcohol use, the more likely a student is to drink heavily.

People are motivated to behave in ways that will project socially desirable images of themselves. Concerns about peer acceptance, social approval, and having an image that you're "one of the crowd" may be particularly strong determinants of drinking behavior among college students. The most frequently desired impressions that motivate first-year students to drink alcohol are "cool/laid back" and "fun/social". Seventy-five percent of first-year college students report performing at least one risky behavior (most commonly alcohol use) during their first semester in order to "fit in". "You learn that if you don't drink, it's kinda like, 'Oh she's not having fun.' They look down on you. If you do drink, it's like you're more open to be more social and people are, 'OK, she's one of us, she's more into socializing.' That kind of thing." Students sometimes drink because they think alcohol makes it easier to meet other people, relaxes their social inhibitions, and helps them have more fun.

I believe these causes don't have as much impact on binge drinking as the drinking age being 21. The prime reason why students feel the need to go to dangerous parties without supervision is because they can't go to a safe environment and drink legally.

  • Is it clear what I mean exactly?

I think it's clear what I mean.

  • Where might the reader be confused? What could be misleading or muddled?

I don't know where the reader would be confused.

  • How does the claim(s) in this paragraph relate to my main claim?

It's stating different reasons why college students might be pressured into drinking excessively.

  • What support have I used to argue this claim? What links this support to my claim? (for these last two, you can underline the support and make bold the linkage if it is explicitly stated. If the linkage is unstated, write it out in this quote box.)
  • College Drinking. "College Drinking." National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Web. 16 March 2013.

http://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/special-populations-co-occurring-disorders/college-drinking

  • Dworkin, Jodi. "Alcohol Use on Campus." University of Minnesota. Web. 27 November 2013.

http://www.cehd.umn.edu/fsos/projects/alcohol/whydrink.asp

  • Steinberg, Laurence. "Lower the Drinking Age to 19." The New York Times. Web. 10 February 2015.

http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2015/02/10/you-must-be-21-to-drink/lower-the-drinking-age-to-19

  • Cary, Mary. "Lowering the drinking age will prevent unsafe binge drinking." U.S. News. Web. 7 May 2014.

http://www.usnews.com/opinion/articles/2014/05/07/lower-the-us-drinking-age-to-reduce-binge-drinking-and-sexual-assault

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