1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

The Atlantic on alcohol consumption

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Alma, Jan 14, 2020.

  1. Alma

    Alma Well-Known Member

    America’s Favorite Poison

    The way Bruenig sees it, pop culture tends to depict society as split between “good guys” who just want to have fun and “bad guys” who want to destroy all the fun. If you’re someone who calls alcohol into question, she said, “you get kind of recruited against your will into this anti-fun agenda.”


    I drink on rare occasion, so I can't say I don't, it might 2 or 3 times a year. But alcohol doesn't get treated like cigarettes because alcohol is cool. I know people who don't drink and they suffer socially as a result. It's part of why people do drink - for the social benefit of not being the person who doesn't.
    SFIND likes this.
  2. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

  3. exmediahack

    exmediahack Well-Known Member

    My issues with alcohol are rather well-known here and a good discussion point with my teenagers.

    Alcohol DESTROYED my marriage and destroyed the house they grew up in. It's a depressant that's advertised, celebrated, sponsored.

    Imagine gas stations doing 2-for-1 cigarette pack happy hours on Mondays and Tuesdays from 4-6 p.m.

    All that being said, I don't think it should be banned from consumption or even ads like cigarettes. My ex-wife's alcoholism took so much from us but that was her choice.

    I just don't like seeing alcohol consumption celebrated through soft feature stories that local news runs on "craft breweries" or the endless, tired t-shirts that say "Mommy Wine Time".
    HC, Tweener, Roscablo and 3 others like this.
  4. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    Drank a lot
    but not much now
    maybe a scotch or 2
    Every blue moon.

    Booze commercialism is humorous.

    Watch beer and liquor commercials
    for the next month
    just for the LOL factor.
  5. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    See DanOregon's post. Prohibition failed. I imagine it would fail if we tried it again. I actually think a ban on cigarettes would have a much better shot of succeeding, though I doubt we'll do it, at least not in my lifetime.

    Alcohol can definitely hurt the people who aren't drinking, but it takes action beyond just consuming the alcohol to make that damage happen. It is a DUI, a violent act, social pressure, the destruction of personal relationships or other such behavior. Smoking damages the non-smoker just by lighting up in their presence. There is no way to prove it 100 percent, but one some level I'm always aware that my asthma was likely caused or exacerbated by growing up around smokers.

    I'm not defending drinking alcohol. I really don't care either way. I drink even more rarely than you do and I wouldn't miss it for a second if it was gone. I think our society would be better off without it, but then you run into the slippery slope arguments about how our society would be better off without junk food, too.
    Iron_chet likes this.
  6. Azrael

    Azrael Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure alcoholism is a "choice." Or a failure of character or of will or goodness. It's at least partially a disease of the body and the mind and one of its most insidious symptoms is that it prevents the drinker from seeking help.

    Beer and mead and wine are some of the oldest recipes in human history. Not sure that we're really seeing anything new in people's social affection or disaffection for it.

    That said, alcohol costs the US something north of a quarter trillion dollars a year in medical bills and lost productivity.
    HC, Tweener, Liut and 1 other person like this.
  7. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    Drank probably 6-8 beers per day from my mid-teens to my mid-twenties.

    Downshifted to 2-3 a day once I got real professional jobs.

    In my mid-30s, i moved into an apartment right across the street from a bar I'd been in a dozen times or so. I fully expected to be a several-times per week regular. I lived there three years; went in the next-door bar maybe 10 times total.

    In the last five years, I've drank a total of maybe 50 beers. Last beer I drank was on Thanksgiving weekend.
    Tweener likes this.
  8. exmediahack

    exmediahack Well-Known Member

    I considered it a choice in my house.

    She went 11 years as a parent without being a drunk and five years before that.

    A choice over 700 incidents.
  9. TrooperBari

    TrooperBari Well-Known Member

    There is some truth to this. I don't drink at all and at times have felt excluded or barely tolerated while those around me boozed it up. Some members of my own family look askance when I turn down a cold one and remind them (again) that I don't drink.

    Then again, I'm not all that broken up about it. Drinking establishments are generally not places I like to visit (loud, crowded, often dark and smoky). Fortunately, most group outings and post-deadline yak sessions I attend these days are at someone's house or a restaurant and thus far more accommodating for a non-drinker. Even those who do want to get their drink on do so in moderation -- with one notable exception -- and don't make it weird for people like me. Of course, I could just be particularly fortunate in my choice of colleagues.
  10. exmediahack

    exmediahack Well-Known Member

    I admit to being surprised this a still a thing that there is still isolation or any stigma to not drinking when going out in a group.
    Liut likes this.
  11. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    Yeah, +250 billion is a lot.
  12. OscarMadison

    OscarMadison Well-Known Member

    Almost anything can be addictive. Our culture determines our poisons.

    I never developed a taste for alcohol or tobacco or pot. The last two on the list are, at best, sense memories from my twenties and early thirties when everyone else seemed to be inhaling something. It's similar to the way I can think of Lubbock and the smells of horses, instrument oil, and alkali dust are the first things to come back. Maybe it's a spectrum thing, but I didn't and beyond an academic/clinical POV, still don't quite get the appeal of inebriation.

    FWIW, my work took me to adolescent dual diagnosis units. (It's a subset of medical model psychiatric treatment where someone with a diagnosis that falls under the aegis of mental health care also has a demonstrated substance abuse problem.) It felt as strange to me going in as any fieldwork I'd done as an undergraduate in areas where there were no shared cultural markers.

    Should alcohol be restricted the way pot is restricted? The depth and breadth of hit points in damage and death, the abbreviated potential, are good arguments for rethinking how we look at our approach to recreational substances. Maybe we should look at where the money comes from and goes where each is concerned. Whiskey, bourbon, and scotch are marketed as the tipple of choice for middle to upper-middle-class white men. The image is that it's made by gentlemen farmer types in almost Disneyfied versions of rural Tennessee and Kentucky. It's genteel and clubby.

    Pot and tobacco have rougher roots. Even though Big Ag lobbyists have backed tobacco for a long time, it's always been about the suits. By the 90s, most of the mid-to-small farmers were doing somewhat better than their hard-scrabble forebears, but not nearly at the same rate as the companies who bought their crops. This is anecdotal but it speaks pretty clearly about the state of the industry. I had no idea there was such a thing as Fall break at universities until I went to school in Bowling Green, KY. It was explained that this was a way to accommodate students who had to help with completing the firing stage and prepping the leaves for auction. Success at auctions determined if some of my classmates would be able to come back for the Spring semester. It was interesting to see the barely veiled classism that divided the "tobacco kids" from the ones who grew up on farms where the main crops were soybeans. (Interesting side note: I went to school with a few "Cotton kids" in Memphis. Leaving school to go help with the crops was never a consideration for them.)

    Pot? I know it's associated with suburban stoner kids (also usually white and mostly middle class and up) but it was originally seen as a drug of choice for African Americans, especially creative professionals and the people who copied them. I'm mostly talking about musicians who made ::whispers:: that kind of music. Can you hear some Murfreesboro matron talking about her child sneaking into the house with a Jazz album they obviously heard about from one of those communist long-hairs over at Middle Tennessee Normal College? Why, those people... You think the historic baggage that comes from being associated with an oppressed people didn't have an impact on the way MJ proponents have had to tiptoe over the legal landscape of American mercantilism?
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page