Victims' Rights Caucus

Speeches

 Mr. Speaker, binge drinking is the silent health epidemic attacking America's underage college students. It is defined as five consecutive drinks for men and four consecutive drinks for women. According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, 43 percent of college students state they are binge drinkers. Parents and college communities are rightfully concerned.

   However, some universities ignore the problem and, in fact, are complicit in this drinking binge. Middlebury College in Vermont claims to have the cure for binge drinking: lower the minimum drinking age from 21 to 18. The former college president proposes that lowering the drinking age will encourage students to drink responsibly. That is an irresponsible statement. This will only encourage younger people to get drunk.

   The answer lies in admitting the problem, enforcing underage drinking laws, and educating students on the effect of binge drinking. Lowering the minimum drinking age just adds fuel to the epidemic and gives students a legal license to drink. Colleges cannot consent to the binge drinking by ignoring the problem and making outlandish statements.

   And that's just the way it is.