Zero Tolerance Laws
Zero Tolerance laws state that persons under the age of 21 must not drink alcohol and drive. Even after one drink, minors will be punished for violating this law regardless of whether they are physically impaired during driving or not.
Violations Of Zero Tolerance
Examples of zero tolerance infractions vary. They could be offenses such as a mandatory 10-day suspension from school for consumption of alcohol by a student on school property. The infractions could be one student's use of mouthwash (containing alcohol as an ingredient) on school property prior to leaving for a dental appointment. Another student at the same school (violating the same rule as a first offender) could receive the exact same punishment for consuming a six-pack of beer in the parking lot during a lunch break.
Drinking Under The Legal Age Limit
The rationale behind Zero Tolerance is very simple. The government raised the minimum drinking age to combat accidents involving alcohol. Because the law states that people under the age of 21 should not purchase or consume alcohol, the government enacted laws that make it illegal to drink any alcohol at all during or before operating any motor vehicle. Also known as DUI or driving under the influence.
Many states also have laws that allow administrative license revocation or suspension if someone is found to have violated an MLDA law. These DUI laws are called “use and lose” laws.
Another law designed to reduce underage drinking is Adult Responsibility Laws. These laws make it illegal for a person over the age of 21 to purchase alcoholic beverages for someone under the age of 21. Some statutes also prohibit minors from soliciting people of age to buy alcohol for them.