Cheers to patriotism and logic!

By Tatiana von Tauber

Georgia Republican, Jack Kingston, deserves applause.   Why?  Because Kingston is exercising logic: he supports lowering the drinking age for military service members. 

“If you’re 18 years old, you can get married, you can sign a contract, buy a piece of property, you can do just about anything, except buy a beer,” said Kingston. “We’re telling young people, you can fly a BlackHawk helicopter, you can drive an Abram tank, you can squeeze the trigger on an M4 rifle and kill a fellow human being, but when you go back home to the officer’s club or MCO clubs, we’re not going to let you make a decision to a beer with your chicken dinner. I think that’s ridiculous and it’s an insult to the men and women who give us freedom.” (source)

Beautiful.  Now if we could get this kind of thinking to transition into other areas we can again become greater than the status quo. I say lower the drinking age all around is the ultimate goal being all 18 year olds have equal rights but one has to begin somewhere and if anyone deserves it, it’s our loyal soldiers.

20 Responses to Cheers to patriotism and logic!

  1. This was tried in the 1970s. The net result was rampant purchase of alcohol by 18 year olds for their under-age high school chums.

    As bas as underage drinking is now, it was much worse then.

    • I think the age should be even lower. As soon as your parents will let you drink, you ought to be allowed to drink. No law ever kept a 14 year old from getting a bottle of vodka. For as long as there are old drunks, there will be 14 year olds who say “hey buddy, do me a favor?”

  2. jonolan says:

    Technically then it should be 17 for servicemembers. That’s the active duty age requirement, not 18.

    Back in my day, your military was proof of age and overrode the drinking age laws in all states. They later changed it to appease Liberals.

    • evrenseven says:

      LIBERALS? CHECK YOU HISTORY. Reagan insisted that states have to raise their age to 21 in order to receive federal highway funds, and Dole wrote the legislation. South Dakota tried to sue but the Supreme Council of Catholic Vice and Virtue ruled that the requirement wasn’t commandeering because congress merely put a requirement to receive funds, they didn’t outright require a state to act.

      Can you please tell us which liberals were appeased when they started enforcing a law enacted, enforced and defended by the GOP? This is a blog of lawyers. We don’t do well with conclusory bullshit like “they did it to appease the liberals.”

      Oh yeah, well I heard they did it to appease the right wingers. So there. My comment came after yours so therefore I’m right.

      • Charles Platt says:

        Actually evrenseven, your own history is a bit suspect.

        MADD mounted an aggressive campaign to raise the drinking age. The legislature reluctantly acknowledged that they didn’t have the power to force states to obey, so they proposed penalizing any holdout states by depriving them of federal highway funds. Reagan rightly saw this as an end-run around Constitutional principles, and threatened a veto. But by this time MADD had done such a fine job of rabbling-rousing, opposing them was political suicide. Reagan eventually knuckled under. Blame him for that, but not for “insisting that states have to raise their age.”

        • Charles is correct. But, I am still awarding this round to everenseven, as jonolan played the dumb “its all the liberals fault” card.

        • evrenseven says:

          Well, I’m pretty sure Reagan was between a rock and a hard place- I mean on one side you’ve got a group of people who’ve had children die in drunk driving accidents and on the other side you’ve got a constitutional end- around.

          I wonder if raising the age to 21 has decreased DUI deaths/ injuries per capita?

  3. evrenseven says:

    Oh yeah, one more thing: can we please stop with the worshipping of soldiers? Having spent lots of time in Oceanside, CA, post 9/11, I came to know lots and lots and LOTS of Marines, and allow me to dispel the idea that they’re some sort of heroes “protekkin our firdom from the terrists.”

    Firstly, my freedom is not in danger from terrorists. In order to take “ma firdom,” they (let’s call them Al Qaida) need to raise an army of sufficient size and capability to invade and occupy the United States, topple the government, install a new government with a sufficient police force to impose its will on a population of 320M, and then enact laws that take away “ma firdom.” Oh, and they need a Navy of sufficient size and capability to bring the invading battalions to the United States, a Navy that is capable of going across oceans without being detected, and if detected take on the ENTIRE WORLD on its way to invade the US. So, I highly doubt that “ma firdom” is in jeopardy due to terrorists. There is a fraction of a tiny chance (less than winning the powerball) of me being hurt or killed in a terrorist attack, but that’s not “taking ma firdom away”

    The other day I was drunk so I was watching fishing, and this guy caught a largemouth and raised it up and said “this is for the troops, who make it possible for me to fish and go to church.” This is the bullshit that persists and will keep our soldiers entangled in foreign conflicts for the hubris of our “leaders.” No, they’re not dying “for our firdom.” They’re dying because W wanted to prove to his daddy that he’s a better president and CIC and could finish what his daddy started.

    Secondly, I implore anyone to go spend time around a marine or army base, and get to know these kids. I was in a bar in Oceanside one evening, and I was zoned out staring at the ground. All of a sudden, some jarhead was ready to tear me apart because he thought I was staring at his girl’s ass. He had to be restrained by 2 other people. This guy could have paralyzed me with one punch to the face. The veins in his neck were pulsing with rage. He didn’t join the military because he wants to “protect ma firdom,” he joined because it’s going to be his only chance to kill HELLA people. Anyway spend some time with these guys. You’ll find that mostly, they’re there because they couldn’t string together 2 semesters of junior college or hold a job down for more than 3 months and finally their parents kicked them out. Does this make them bad people? No. It describes me at that age. But it certainly doesn’t put them on a pedestal either.

    So, my point is, the longer we keep this “troop worship” going, the longer they’re going to be entangled overseas getting blown to pieces.

    Oh, and I cant wait for like 10-15 years from now, when these shell shocked kids (then adults) are living on the streets begging for a quarter. Then we’ll see where these hypocrites’ yellow ribbons are. Tied around their wallets. “WHAT? THEY WANT TO RAISE MY TAXES TO PAY FOR VETERANS WITH PTSD? THOSE BUMS SHOULD GET A JOB!”

    whew, feel better. thanks.

    • jonolan says:

      OK, I was going to debate your point but, after that treasonous diatribe, I see no further use for words between us.

      I remember though to send my USMC friends here though. Some of them are stationed near you and might to take up this conversation with you – here or at a bar…

      • “treasonous” ? What the fuck does that mean? Look up what the word treason means. You’ll need to take your head out of your asshole to do it, by the way.

        I was in the military. I can confirm that everything everenseven said is consistent with my experience while a member.

        Another round in the everenseven v. jonolan bout goes to everenseven.

        • evrenseven says:

          This is not an “anti troop” diatribe. It’s a “for shit’s sake bring these kids home!” diatribe.

          As long as there’s this mythology that they have to be other there, otherwise I can’t fish or go to church, they will be there dying for nothing.

          So yeah, bring them back and lower the drinking age!

          This was the probably the wrong post to make this rant, but I’ve been wanting to say this for some time.

          and the last bit I said was clearly sarcastic. I’m just certain that 15 years from now, some GOP fuckwad who got elected on a hawkish platform is going to block veteran’s benefits because big gubmint is scary.

          I generally speak exclusively in hyperbole and sarcasm.

      • evrenseven says:

        Jon, I’m not saying this to be glib, or hateful. I’m just saying that you and every single other military person is in danger for NO GOOD REASON; and that’s unacceptable to me

        If you believe that the conflicts in the middle east are truly enabling my freedom here in the US, please present a logical argument why.

        I’ll get you started: Geopolitical stability enables the US economy. The US economy enables everything that Americans are used to, including our individual rights. Unhindered oil is necessary to achieve geopolitical stability. Go. (This is the argument I tell myself so I don’t turn into Cindy Sheehan)

        • Sean F. says:

          I’ll give you a logical argument why conflicts in the Middle East are (ultimately) protecting your freedom.

          Combat experience.

          It is necessary for our military (as it’s structured today) to maintain a ready supply of soldiers with combat experience. Drill instructors are required to have served in combat.

          Also, most (if not all) special forces require applicants to have combat experience as well because a person who has proven that they can operate in a combat environment is a safer bet to not crack under pressure than someone who has never seen action. Special forces are the guys who keep shit from blowing up in our face every day (though most never realize it). It’s extrememly important that they continue to do what they do and do it well.

          It’s cold, I know, but logic often is.

  4. Thilo says:

    This thread has pretty much gone off topic …

    For what it is worth, I completely agree with Tatiana’s point in the original post. If you are old enough to serve in the military then you are old enough to buy a beer, dammit. And if any member of the military asks me to buy them a drink because they can’t do it for themselves because of some bullshit law, I’ll break that law and be proud of it!

  5. evrenseven says:

    You’re right; my fault. I apologize for hijacking this post.

  6. Simon says:

    Totally agree with Tatiana’s original point about lowering the legal drinking age to 18 for military personnel.
    I served in the British Army for 12 years & this conundrum came up on occasion, we solved it by having another beer & saying fuck it!!!
    Regarding the concept of military hagiography, I now live in Australia where the Army in particular has a close & revered position in society, Every year the numbers attending ANZAC Day commemorations, (25 April) show an increase despite the fact that we no longer have any Gallipoli veterans now still alive.
    We remember, honour & respect the past service men & women who have served in the name of “freedom” in WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq & now Afghanistan.
    Our bravest & best are still dying in a cause they volunteer for, not trying to excuse aggressive drunken behaviour from military personnel but they do operate in a different head-space from the civilian world, Jon check with your USMC buddies.

    This blog is one of ther reason our fathers & grandfathers served, don’t forget ther reasons behind WWII, oppression, censorship etc.

  7. John Burgess says:

    I’d rather that 17/18-year-olds be given of choice: 1) drinking license OR 2) drivers license. One, but not both. Even undrunk young drivers fling themselves (and others) across the countryside with disproportionate frequency.

    If you look at those European countries with enlightened, low drinking ages, you find that there’s a much lower proportion of even having drivers licenses. Putting the cost of acquiring such licenses in the thousands of dollars has something to do with this, no doubt.

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