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mkl654321
mkl654321
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August 30th, 2010 at 10:49:20 AM permalink
Quote: Ibeatyouraces

Also I dont consider 18-20 as a child. They are consenting legal adults in ANY jurisdiction.



The rationales for considering such persons as "adults" are artifacts of an earlier age:

We considered 18-21 year olds as "adults" because by that time, they could have popped out half a dozen kids, and we might as well have given them a higher societal status than their children.

We considered 18-21 year olds as "adults" so we could justify sending them off to war, even though very few of them had any concept of why they were fighting or what they were getting into. But testosterone-soaked eighteen-year-old boys make EXCELLENT soldiers, and excellent targets.

We considered 18-21 year olds as "adults" because in the year 1900, the life expectancy of the average adult was barely over 40.

We lowered the drinking age to 18 in many states, because, uh, errrr.....

We want to allow 18-year-olds to gamble because, er....

You see my point. Teenagers/young adults have NEVER been "adults", but our societies have constructed the fiction that they WERE, in order to serve a higher purpose. None of those purposes exist any longer. Furthermore, we finally have access to psychological research that unequivocally confirms that young persons' brains are still developing at 18, and at 21. Given that unlike in the past, a person of 18 has not yet even lived 1/4 of his life, it seems stupid and counterproductive to call that person an adult, and give him the privileges and responsibilities thereof.

In the case of drinking and casino gambling, I cannot fathom any gain to society from lowering the threshold age(s); quite the opposite.
The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one. The happiness of credulity is a cheap and dangerous quality.---George Bernard Shaw
SOOPOO
SOOPOO
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August 30th, 2010 at 12:03:33 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the gambling age 19 in Canada, and 18 in Australia?



19 in Ontario. I enjoyed going with my 19 y/o son. I was happy his first 2 experiences were with me... long time at paigow with modest win... then second time quick loss of bankroll. I am happy he experienced both sides...
rdw4potus
rdw4potus
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August 30th, 2010 at 12:17:07 PM permalink
Quote: mkl654321



In the case of drinking and casino gambling, I cannot fathom any gain to society from lowering the threshold age(s); quite the opposite.



I think you're right if you assume that more 18 year olds would drink or gamble if it were legal. In that case, the activities are best left illegal for the 18-20 year-old crowd (note: 18 is the gambling age here in MN, and our largest casino is dry). If you think that 18 year olds will drink and gamble whether it's legal or not, then I would argue that it's better for them to have a safe and regulated environment for those activities.

For example: I am 29. I am quite certain that I drank more alcohol between ages 18 and 20 than I have since my 21st birthday. If alcohol was less mystical/dangerous/taboo when I was 19, I probably would have drank a lot less.
"So as the clock ticked and the day passed, opportunity met preparation, and luck happened." - Maurice Clarett
SanchoPanza
SanchoPanza
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August 30th, 2010 at 2:37:08 PM permalink
Quote: mkl654321

teenage brains aren't fully developed



Nor are many adults' brains, as you and many others have often noted here.

Quote:

Young people do foolhardy things because those skills don't develop until the mid-20's, or much later



Or never.
mkl654321
mkl654321
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August 30th, 2010 at 2:46:05 PM permalink
Quote: rdw4potus

I think you're right if you assume that more 18 year olds would drink or gamble if it were legal. In that case, the activities are best left illegal for the 18-20 year-old crowd (note: 18 is the gambling age here in MN, and our largest casino is dry). If you think that 18 year olds will drink and gamble whether it's legal or not, then I would argue that it's better for them to have a safe and regulated environment for those activities.

For example: I am 29. I am quite certain that I drank more alcohol between ages 18 and 20 than I have since my 21st birthday. If alcohol was less mystical/dangerous/taboo when I was 19, I probably would have drank a lot less.



Probably the relative impacts are different for gambling and alcohol; it's very easy for an underage person to obtain alcohol, but it would be MUCH harder for him to find someone to book his bets.

I do agree that making something illicit is (for teenagers, at least) to make it more attractive. For instance, if a law was passed against minors roasting and eating old socks, millions of teenagers would be doing just that. Which brings to mind an effective strategy: if you don't want your teenager doing drugs or smoking, DEMAND that he do those things, repeatedly tell him how COOL drugs and cigarettes are, and instantly, he won't touch them with a ten-foot pole (age and guile beat youth and inexperience).
The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one. The happiness of credulity is a cheap and dangerous quality.---George Bernard Shaw
Doc
Doc
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August 30th, 2010 at 3:07:27 PM permalink
mkl654321:

Your post just reminded me of the two fathers' scheming in the plot for "The Fantastics". Hadn't thought about that in years. Thanks for stirring the memories!
Garnabby
Garnabby
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August 30th, 2010 at 4:22:35 PM permalink
Quote: mkl654321

You see my point. Teenagers/young adults have NEVER been "adults", but our societies have constructed the fiction that they WERE, in order to serve a higher purpose. None of those purposes exist any longer. Furthermore, we finally have access to psychological research that unequivocally confirms that young persons' brains are still developing at 18, and at 21. Given that unlike in the past, a person of 18 has not yet even lived 1/4 of his life, it seems stupid and counterproductive to call that person an adult, and give him the privileges and responsibilities thereof.



A few weeks ago, a twenty-something kid on the street asked me for some change. I asked him, "Why would i want to hand out money to someone who could likely "beat the crap" out of me (at 49)?"

Likewise, simply because they made better workers/soldiers a hundred years ago, and still as lung-capacity, reaction-time, etc, begin to decline at age twenty. And the birthing age for young girls has been steadily falling, as i heard again the other day, to a few even at age seven. It's simple evolutionary design, for any species to produce more off-spring which mature faster and live longer... psychologically as well as physically.

Quote: mkl654321

In the case of drinking and casino gambling, I cannot fathom any gain to society from lowering the threshold age(s); quite the opposite.



I don't know how true this is, but it makes sense that it's they who never "learned how to drink" in their youth who become the alcoholics and drug-addicts later in life.
Why bet at all, if you can be sure? Anyway, what constitutes a "good bet"? - The best slots-game in town; a sucker's edge; or some gray-area blackjack-stunts? (P.S. God doesn't even have to exist to be God.)
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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August 30th, 2010 at 4:35:22 PM permalink
I'm not for 18, but 19 yes. Call it arbitary, but I think there is a great deal more maturity to age 18 vs 18. I think it would also keep the high school kids out of the casino. I think the USA is too concerned with keeping people "kids" for too long. A generation ago you were in the army at age 18. Most of the Manhattan Project Membners were < 29. Today you can still be deciding your major at age 23.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
mkl654321
mkl654321
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August 30th, 2010 at 5:02:20 PM permalink
Quote: Garnabby

Likewise, simply because they made better workers/soldiers a hundred years ago, and still as lung-capacity, reaction-time, etc, begin to decline at age twenty. And the birthing age for young girls has been steadily falling, as i heard again the other day, to a few even at age seven. It's simple evolutionary design, for any species to produce more off-spring which mature faster and live longer... psychologically as well as physically.



That's actually not true, in the somewhat unique case of humans. The human infant is the most helpless of all mammalian offspring; contrast with a horse or a dolphin infant. Likewise, the attainment of sexual maturity happens VERY late in the life cycle for humans. What significance this has from an evolutionary standpoint is that "slow development" has been selected for, at the expense of high birthrates. This means that what makes the human species viable is the establishment of strong social contacts and kin relationships: four or five strong, healthy children that are cared for by the peer group is better than ten children that receive uneven attention and allocation of resources.

In human society, the pressure to become a putative "adult" as soon as sexual maturity was reached was based on the fact that until quite recently, if one waited until one was in their twenties before procreating, they might very well have not lived to see their offspring reach maturity. Therefore, society encouraged teenagers to take on adult responsibilities well before their brains were equipped to cope with those responsibilities. This pressure is no longer valid now that life expectancies are so much higher, and in fact, we do expect people to postpone child-rearing until well past puberty.

The fact that female fertility has been occuring at a younger and younger age may be due to better nutrition and overall health in the population, rather than any larger evolutionary trend. As I've explained, a higher birthrate may not be advantageous for the species, so it is questionable whether natural selection is favoring the species characteristic of earlier fertility.
The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one. The happiness of credulity is a cheap and dangerous quality.---George Bernard Shaw
cclub79
cclub79
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August 30th, 2010 at 5:24:24 PM permalink
One argument that I always thought was the most flawed yet most overused argument for lowering the drinking age to 18 (and I don't see why it wouldn't work for gambling, either): "If he can go to war and die for his country, then he can have a beer." First, if there were a way to make it legal for just military personnel to drink at age 18, fine. But you don't just "go off to war". You are trained for weeks if not months to become a different person. For better or worse, that training matures most men. I'm fine with 18 year-olds drinking, if they are willing to take a 2-3 month non-stop course on alcohol and the responsibilities that go with it, or any commensurate non-stop course similar to military training.

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