College presidents push to lower drinking age

FAIRFIELD - Presidents of some of the nation's most renowned universities are calling on lawmakers to consider lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18.

The presidents have formed a movement called the "Amethyst Initiative." While the initiative doesn't explicitly state the drinking age should be lowered, it expresses the signers? opinion that the current law is creating a culture of dangerous binge drinking.

Some college students, and even parents, agree that it would only be appropriate if young adults who are allowed to join the military and vote would also be allowed to drink. But the idea still remains controversial.

According to a psychiatrist at the Silver Hill Rehabilitation Hospital in New Canaan, if the law is changed, it will increase addiction and drunk driving. The doctor adds that it will be detrimental to the health of the young people because their brains are still developing.

While the debate around the issue of legal drinking age continues, the president of Fairfield University joined the ?Amethyst Initiative.?

?I think it will instill in them a sense of independence to make the right decisions,? says Fairfield University Dean of Students Thomas Pellegrino. ?I think it will enable universities across the nation to focus on what their mission is.?

Other Connecticut colleges on the list include Saint Joseph College in Hartford, Trinity College, the University of Hartford and the University of New Haven.

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