Argumentative essay on legal driving age
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Driving for many teenagers is there first passage to freedom, nothing is more exciting to many teens than becoming the legal age to drive. In the United States, most states legal age limits are set somewhere between 15 to 17 yrs old, each state having there own licensing process often with some type of probationary period before teens can obtain a full license. Recently law makers in Florida, Georgia, Delaware, Illinois, and Massachusetts have debated raising the legal driving age. Many of them agreeing that it will make roads safer for everyone. These law makers want to see a change in the legal driving age because teenagers are more likely to be distracted by mobile media, driving is considered to an adult responsibility, younger drivers are more likely to be in a serious accident, and government has the right to restrict driving to make it safer.
There are viable arguments for and against change of the legal driving age, both having good key points. The article states the legal driving age varies from country to country, however in some states of of America the legal age is 15 or younger. More often than not, the legal driving age comes a year or so if not more before the legal age to vote. Since statistics show that young drivers are most likely to have accidents, it leads to law makers out cry of raising the legal driving age from time to time, although its unlikely to happen.
The article states that the legal driving age in America comes before being able to vote; thus those law makers would want the legal driving age raised to 18. However, in many European countries the driving age is already 18, and they too have looked at raising the legal driving age. Easily distracted young people, and studies showing young drivers are the most likely age group to be in serious accidents are the major key factors for wanting this change. Arguments against the change derive their arguments from the key factor of: being able to travel is apart of young peoples’ livelihood, and learning to drive is a key point in the social development of becoming an adult and raising the age will in turn cause teenagers to be more immature.
Analysis of both arguments point out some important flaws. The key points for rise of the legal driving age like: young people being more distracted, it could be argued that there are young adults (I.E 20-28 yrs old) who are just as easily if not more distracted by mobile media. It is a wave that not only sweeps the youngest driving age group. The statics that reveal young drivers as being more likely to be in an accident; this argument could be sited to young drivers being the least experienced and knowledgeable in driving, not just because they are young. Which points to the licensing process itself, setting stricter guidelines in place would lessen the likely hood of teenagers having accidents. Lastly the text discredits its own argument by stating “many European countries already have a driving age of 18”. Thus if they have already raised their legal driving age to 18 and still debate that it should be raised than age alone is not the problem.
Arguments against the change in this article are fairly weak, there are numerous other arguments they could have used like those previously pointed out by myself. The text states that driving is a key teenage milestone to becoming an adult, and raising that age will in turn make teenagers less responsible. This argument could be disproved by stating driving is not the only way teenagers mature, getting a job, being responsible for completing school work, and doing chores around their house hold could also make them more mature. Also this argument could be negated by having safer roads, many would agree the latter is more important than setting a teen milestone back a few years.
Both arguments have viable key points, but they also have some major weaknesses. Raising the legal driving age in fact would not be a viable answer to unsafe roads, and high-risk drivers as demonstrated in European nations. Some citizens are late getting there license for different reasons, they too are still high risk even though they are older. Instead of continuing an age old argument, law makers together should focus their attention on the process of obtaining a drivers license. No matter what age a license is obtained, if the process obtaining it is not par to the what novice drivers will experience than it still will lead to the same problems presently faced.
“This house would raise the legal driving age to 18” Idebate.org January 26 2012.