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Drinking license

benhocking (724439) writes | more than 6 years ago

User Journal 9

A coworker and I were talking about the problem of people learning to drive before they learn to drink. This is a major problem, in our opinion, because Americans "learn" to drink after becoming drivers. This friend had an interesting idea for solving this problem - drinking licenses, handed out at, say, 16. (Driving licenses could then be handed out at 17 or 18. The actual ages involved are not really part of this idea.) Maybe there'd even be a learner's permit for drinking. Anyways, there woulA coworker and I were talking about the problem of people learning to drive before they learn to drink. This is a major problem, in our opinion, because Americans "learn" to drink after becoming drivers. This friend had an interesting idea for solving this problem - drinking licenses, handed out at, say, 16. (Driving licenses could then be handed out at 17 or 18. The actual ages involved are not really part of this idea.) Maybe there'd even be a learner's permit for drinking. Anyways, there would be several side effects, including:

  • Regardless of how old you look, they would always need to ask you for your drinking license. (Granted, this might result in everyone getting ugly "bracelets" when they enter a club, or in non-licensed drinkers not being allowed into that club.)
  • Revoking your drinking license would be an excellent deterrent for a lot of crimes, thus freeing up jails, etc. Drunk & disorderly? 1 month suspension. Drunk driving? Not only do you lose your driver's license, you also lose your license to drink. Naturally, drinking without a license (meaning you never got one or had it revoked, not meaning you left it at home), would require stiffer penalties.

This same idea could be extended to other controlled substances. Do you think this would be a good idea? If not, why? Either way, what other side effects would you predict? (Note: I already know it'll never happen.)

9 comments

Yes (1)

davburns (49244) | more than 6 years ago | (#19148869)

I've also thought a drinking license would be a good idea. I don't know if it matters if you learn to drink before you learn to drive, but I do think these should not happen at the same time. So, it might work that when you're 16, you can choose which one you want. If you do good with one, you can add the other when you turn 21. Drunk drivers would loose both for a short while (60 days?), then get to choose which they want back -- while still not getting the other for a longer time (another 5 years?).

You're right that this will never happen. Driver's licenses (mostly) work because driving is a privilege, not a right. The prohabition era showed that Americans don't feel that way about alcohol, however.

Re:Yes (1)

nizo (81281) | more than 6 years ago | (#19149635)

That does bring up an interesting point though: people whine all the time about losing their license for driving drunk (can't get to work whine whine); this way they could just lose their drinking license but can still legally drive.

Next up (1)

nizo (81281) | more than 6 years ago | (#19149233)

Parent licenses. Seriously.


I like the idea, though it also goes against my "leave people the hell alone" philosophy. Then again, drinking, driving, and parenting all have an impact on society as a whole, so making laws to help protect the rights (and often lives) of others does make sense. Of course then you have the questions of who will grant these licenses and who will teach drinking/parenting classes, and who decides what will be taught in the classes? I am guessing a class for to get your drinking license would be taught differently if MADD created the curriculum v.s. one heavily influenced by the booze industry.

MADD vs. booze industry (1)

benhocking (724439) | more than 6 years ago | (#19149491)

Yeah, and good luck finding an "impartial" party. Of course, I think ironing out the details of a parenting license would be the most divisive.

Moo (1)

Chacham (981) | more than 5 years ago | (#19163197)

Attendant: What would you like to order
Customer: I'd like a hamburger and some fries.
Attendant: OK, i need to see you're last cholesterol reading, a doctor's note allowing your high intake of fat, and i need you to sign this realease form should you have a heart-attack.

Although the idea of licensing people is a nice idea for a workable solution, it also removes responsibility from the person and places a lot of support on the system itself. Driver's licenses didn't make good drivers, it just makes a more effective way of punishing them. A Drinking license won;t make better drinker's, it'll just make a more consistent system for dealing with it.

No problem (1)

benhocking (724439) | more than 5 years ago | (#19163979)

My cholesterol's around 100 (thanks Dad!). :) Of course, my HDL cholesterol is also rather low, so my LDL/HDL ratio isn't so hot. Since my cholesterol tests come back with me marked as abnormally low, I asked my Doctor if that was something to be concerned about. He told me that as long as I'm eating, no. It seems that extremely low cholesterol correlates with poor health, but that it isn't in any way thought to cause poor health. Rather, people who are very sick sometimes stop eating, causing their cholesterol levels to go way down, or something like that.

But hey, if you've got nothing to hide, then what's the problem? ;)

As to regards to the other topic, how do you feel about people learning to drink before they learn to drive?

Re:No problem (1)

Chacham (981) | more than 5 years ago | (#19164983)

how do you feel about people learning to drink before they learn to drive?

To me, all the matters is responsibility. And that *should* fall upon the parents. I have never thought of it past just that.
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