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Veteran thinks drinking age should be lower

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Updated: April 11, 2013 6:35AM



Dr. Wallace: I’m outraged that you are against drinking alcohol until a person reaches the “magic” age of 21, and you even included those in the military. I happen to be a Desert Storm veteran. If an 18-year-old G.I. can vote, be charged as an adult for a crime and die for his country, he should be able to have a cold beer when he’s thirsty.

I’m tired of “goody-goody” guys like you preaching about the “evils of drinking alcohol.” I know you are not a military veteran or you wouldn’t think the way you do. We vets have got to stick together.

Veteran, Galesburg, Ill.

Veteran: It’s not important if I am or am not a military veteran when I say the world would be a much better and safer place if all the alcohol suddenly vanished forever. Alcohol has triggered more tragedy and pain than it has brought joy and comfort. But, for your information, I served my country in the Korean War. I only mention this to show that all vets don’t think alike. Thank goodness!

It would be great if an 18-year-old could enjoy a single cold beer when he was really thirsty. But alcohol is an addictive drug, and eventually, the one drink leads to another and another. I’m firmly convinced that alcohol use has brought more pain and destruction to families than it has brought joy and healing.

Dr. Wallace: My parents are divorced, and I live with my mom and my grandmother. I’m 15 years old. My problem is that ever since the divorce, my mother has been very grouchy. She constantly blames me for every little thing, and she is rude and unkind to Grandma and to me.

Last night I was talking to my boyfriend, and my mother walked by and pulled the telephone from my hand and hung it up. I was so embarrassed I broke into tears. When my boyfriend called back to find out what happened my mother wouldn’t let me answer the phone. All she did was swear a lot.

My father is living in a beautiful new apartment, and he told me I could come live with him and his new wife. I would have my own bedroom and live in a nicer neighborhood. My mother said I could go if I want to; she didn’t care. I talked to my grandmother (my mother’s mother), and she said I should live with my father until my mother “gets her act together.” I would also be in my same school.

I know you really care for teens, so I’m wondering what you would advise me to do? I hate to leave my mother, but somehow I feel I am annoying her right now.

Sheila, Tyler, Texas

Sheila: Take your grandmother’s advice. If mother needs and wants you to come back when she “gets her act together,” you still have the option to return to live with her if you want to.

Write to Dr. Wallace
at rwallace@galesburg.net



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