Monday, March 5, 2012

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Alcohol And Drugs

          When it comes to alcohol and drug addiction, the problem is not the substance itself but rather the lack of self control.  Yes, there are those who unwittingly fall into the clutches of addiction, but choices along the way are the contributing factors.  Drinking is not evil, but drunkenness is.  Drugs, especially prescription drugs, are not the problem but rather the abuse of those drugs.  Government to the rescue: heroine, because it wasn’t addicting, was introduced after the civil war to get soldiers off of their addiction to morphine.  Kudzu and love bugs also were governmental attempts to help out in problem areas.  For almost six thousand years, drugs were not illegal.  They obviously had a purpose, or God wouldn’t have placed them here.  Once again: government to the rescue.   

          It used to make me angry that antibiotics, codeine, and barbiturates were available over the counter in places like Mexico and Japan but under Rx only here in the US.  If we can freely medicate with alcohol, why not with the rest?  Perhaps the American citizen is just not as intelligent as the Mexicans and Japanese.  There might be one more thought on this subject.  Perhaps the American Medical Association has lobbyists that help it maintain their monopoly in distributing drugs.  My doctor recently told me that he would not be prescribing codeine for my arthritic and orthopedic pain as the government is cracking down on drug abuse. Do thirty pills every six months to a year qualify as drug abuse?  It’s just a fact that the pills he gives me now just don’t work as well, even when I take three Tylenol with them.

          I do have some experience with alcohol.  My father was a drunk during most of his life.  Very few people have ever seen me take more than two or three drinks in any one evening (even when the drinks were free).  There have been two times that I did drink more and I will explain.  The first instance was when I was in the army and decided to find out what my father got out of his drinking.  I sat outside of the houch, where I was staying, with a quart of Jim Beam and 6 bottles (three liters) of German beer.  After I drank it, some of the guys asked me to go with them to the enlisted men’s club for a drink.  No buzz, no fun, no nuttin!  Later while attending an Al-Anon meeting with my mother, I related the story.  I was informed that with a capacity like that, I was an alcoholic in waiting.  According to them, over the years, the capacity would diminish and the alcohol would take over.  The second instance was about two years ago.  Where I worked, most of the people were heavy drinkers.  I accompanied several of them on a business trip and found that they thought it was time to get Rick drunk.  I know it was foolish but decided to pray (keeping in mind that the Bible doesn’t forbid drinking, but does speak against getting drunk) about my safety and participate in their contest.  To make a long story short, I wasn’t the one who passed out and fell and hurt his head.  I was the one who picked him up.  Upon the council of my wife, and the reinstallation of good sense, I will not be attempting this again. 

A few appropriate quotes seem relevant here.

“First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you.” George Washington

“Drunkenness is nothing but voluntary madness.” Seneca the Younger (Roman philosopher, mid-1st century AD)

“One reason I don't drink is that I want to know when I'm having a good time.” Nancy Astor

“People who drink to drown their sorrow should be told that sorrow knows how to swim.” Ann Landers

“Alcohol gives you infinite patience for stupidity.” Sammy Davis, Jr.

“Alcohol is necessary for a man so that he can have a good opinion of himself, undisturbed by the facts.” Finley Peter Dunne

“A hangover is the wrath of grapes.”  Author Unknown

“The first thing in the human personality that dissolves in alcohol is dignity.”  Author Unknown

“If you drink, don't drive.  Don't even putt.”  Dean Martin

Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.”  Proverbs 20:1

“Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder. Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things.” Proverbs 23:31-33

He that loveth pleasure shall be a poor man: he that loveth wine and oil shall not be rich.” Proverbs 21:17

As a thorn goeth up into the hand of a drunkard, so is a parable in the mouth of fools.” Proverbs 26:9

          We all know that wine was used by many people in the Bible, but was condemned when used in any manor other than moderation.  Jesus, King David, Paul and the disciples, among others, drank wine.  Jesus’ first miracle was to convert water into wine. Paul said to Timothy: “Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses”

“Am I self-righteous? Why not? It's not like I can count on you to be righteous for me”.[1]  We can see from the above that just having a drink is not evil.  However, the misuse of drugs and alcohol is the problem, and many have succumbed to their wiles. We must realize that all things in moderation is the answer, to preventing the addiction from ever beginning. 

[1] Henry Rollins


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