Serial wowser Ian Hickie from the Brain and Mind Research Institute has for weeks been peddling to the media his idea that we should raise the legal drinking age to counter the scourge of teenage binge drinking.
The crux of his argument is that young people’s brains are still developing and exposure to excessive amounts of alcohol during this period could lead to increased dumbness, or at least reduced cleverness, and a greater risk of mental health problems.
Of course, Professor Hickie lacks any scientific evidence that raising the drinking age would improve the situation.
But just to give you a very rough idea, what if there were a country where the legal drinking age was 21 instead of 18? Wouldn’t the citizens of that country be, overall, less dumb than those of countries with a lower legal drinking age? Wouldn’t they suffer fewer mental health problems?
What’s that you say? The legal drinking age in the United States is 21 and has been for decades? Goodness me!
So if Ian Hickie were correct, US citizens would be the smartest and mentally healthiest people on the planet.
But it turns out more US citizens believe in angels than the theory of evolution or anthropogenic climate change. A lot more.
Seems like the evidence doesn’t stack up, prof…