Last updated on: 2/25/2015 | Author:

Camille Paglia, PhD Biography

Professor of Humanities and Media Studies at the University of the Arts
Pro to the question "Should the Drinking Age Be Lowered from 21 to a Younger Age?"

“The National Minimum Drinking Age Act, passed by Congress 30 years ago this July, is a gross violation of civil liberties and must be repealed. It is absurd and unjust that young Americans can vote, marry, enter contracts and serve in the military at 18 but cannot buy an alcoholic drink in a bar or restaurant. The age-21 rule sets the U.S. apart from all advanced Western nations and lumps it with small or repressive countries like Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Indonesia, Qatar, Oman and the United Arab Emirates.

Congress was stampeded into this puritanical law by Mothers Against Drunk Driving, who with all good intentions were wrongly intruding into an area of personal choice…

Now that marijuana regulations have been liberalized in Colorado, it’s time to strike down this dictatorial national law. Government is not our nanny…

What this cruel 1984 law did is deprive young people of safe spaces where they could happily drink cheap beer, socialize, chat and flirt in a free but controlled public environment.”

“The Drinking Age Is Past Its Prime,” TIME, Apr. 23, 2014

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Professor of Humanities and Media Studies, University of the Arts, 1984-present
  • Columnist and co-founding contributor,, 1995-present
  • Contributor, TIME
  • Contributing editor, Interview magazine
  • Member, editorial board, Arion
  • PhD, Yale University, 1974
  • MPhil, Yale University, 1971
  • BA, State University of New York at Binghamton, 1968
  • Born Apr. 2, 1947 in Endicott, NY
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Should the Drinking Age Be Lowered from 21 to a Younger Age?