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Analysis Of The Law Of Driving Under The Influence Of Alcohol Under The Legal Drinking Age Of 21

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According to the law Section 628 ILCS 5/11-501.7 Youthful Intoxicated Driver’s Visitation Program, it explains the law of driving under the influence of alcohol under the legal drinking age of 21. It explains that if convicted of this crime the victim will have to follow one of the three choices provided by a supervised visitation program at a facility. The three options are: “1. A state or private rehabilitation facility that cares for victims of motor vehicle accidents involving persons under the influence of alcohol. 2. A facility which cares for advanced alcoholics to observe the person in the terminal stages of alcoholism, under the supervision of appropriately licensed medical personnel. And lastly 3. If approved by the coroner of the county where the person resides, the county coroner’s office or the county morgue to observe appropriate victims of motor vehicle accidents involving the person under the influence of alcohol, under the supervision of the coroner or deputy coroner.”

In the law stated above Classical Theory is present. Classical Theory is “A model of crime that assumes that crime occurs after a rational individual mentally weighs the potential good and bad consequences of crime and then makes a decision about whether to engage in a given behavior.” I believe that the only important elements missing from this stated law are the punishment that goes along with the supervised visitation program that the person must attend. I believe that whatever program they decide on must follow with some sort of punishment that makes the person understand how important this law is no matter the age of the victim is. They need to understand that once they do become 21 it is still not okay to drive under the influence. It is a serious law that needs to take in a serious matter. Not only is the state trying to protect the driver, but also the passengers of the vehicle and the vehicles on the road at the same time.

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I believe this policy is more consistent with the idea of Routine Activities “An explanation of crime that assumes crime and victimization are highest in places where three factors come together in time and place: motivated offenders, suitable or attractive targets, and absence of a guardian.” I believe it is more consistent because most likely someone who is under the age of 21 will be caught with a DUI because that’s around the same time frame that young adults move away from home and start experiencing drinking and possibly other substances. The young adults may or may not realize the consequences they could face if they are caught in this act. For example, a kid who is under the age of 18 may not think to commit a small crime is that bad because it will be cleared from their record once they become legal. Same goes with drinking under the legal drinking age they may not think it is as serious because they are “young”. Another reason I believe it falls under this theory is, it also has to do with time and location of the incident. A young person could think that they will be safe driving under the influence if they are just going a block down the street or just straight home from a friend’s house, but all in all driving under the influence is illegal especially under the age of 21 no matter the circumstances. Routine Activities also focus on the reasoning process of people considering criminal acts as well as people freely choose their behaviors and are motivated by the avoidance of pain and the pursuit of pleasure.

Given that I know and understand the theories of classical and contemporary classical, and how it assesses the ability of such a law to reduce underage drinking and driving; I believe a facility which cares for advanced alcoholics and to observe persons in the terminal stages of alcoholism, under the supervision of appropriate licensed medical personnel, could have a major impact on their lives. I think all the programs listed under the law would be effective, but I think this would be most effective in my opinion because drunk driving once won’t stop them from doing it again especially if they get away with it. Second, catching early alcoholism in a person will be healthier and more effective in the long-term use. Thirdly, learning that there are rules for a reason can help a person in other areas of life as well. Lastly, understanding the long-term effects at an early age can reduce alcohol use in the individual. According to the general assumptions of these theories, I believe there some ideas that should be present for this statute to be valid. Knowing if you drink and drive there will be a punishment. The people at the facilities are there to support the victims and to help them understand the safety and health hazers behind drinking under the influence. They are there to help one move forward from the incident in a positive manner. Lastly, have the proper medical staff to determine if the action is a possibility a long-time problem and to catch it earlier rather than later and possibly let it ruin their future.

A policy that I believe and have seen work first handed to help prevent underage drunk driving is having it be a part of school curriculum. I believe that when students start high school they should be learning about alcohol and drug use. They should not just be told it is terrible to stay away from it, but they should legitimately be taught why it is harmful and the long-term effects can bed. For example, bringing in people that are alcoholics who have been in trouble for DUI’s would be a great experience for high schoolers and meeting and listening to real-life people in person share their stories, and possibly what they did to get help and move forward positively. Having someone come in and speak who still may struggle with alcohol and see what happens when you don’t reach out for help as well could help a young adult understand and comprehend what could and couldn’t happen to you in the future and learn how to make the right decisions majority of the time and not just sometimes. Learning both sides of situations can be helpful especially when it is positive and negative. Understanding both sides helps individuals picture and physically see and clear representation of which way of life they want to take.

I’m sure many policies can be said and put into actions for trying to reduce underage drinking, but at the end of the day it is the specific individual’s choice and instead he or she makes the correct and responsible choice is up to them. It does not matter what information they have heard, what shows they have seen, or how they are raised; it is a personal choice and once it has been done once it’s hard to get right again.

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