February 23rd, 2011


30 day challenge Number 3 - Booze and Drugs

I like the occasional drink, preferably a brown spirit such as whisky or brandy, but given my stupidity while drunk in the past and some lingering concerns about alcoholism I rarely, if ever, drink a lot any more. Maybe on new year, that's about it. I abhor the 'get bladdered every night' drinking culture at work and play in the UK and as 'token sober guy' it can make evenings out uncomfortable, which is part of the reason I don't go out much (as well as relative isolation).

Drugs? Tried a few, not found much that I liked, pot leaves me cold. Mushrooms were nice, but damned inconvenient and that was almost more out of a sense of obligation as a creative person to try something like that as anything else. So yeah, I've experimented but not really been into anything, despite being immersed in a cloud of stoners for much of my teens and twenties - so much for the peer pressure theory.

What do I think about it?

There's no easy solution to the drinking culture, you have to change the culture and that's not done with prohibition and it's not done by forcing in other means. You need to change the culture similarly to how we have managed to with smoking. Make the health risks and costs explicit and public opinion will - slowly - follow. It took 30 years of gradual change and science to show smoking was harmful and to make it socially relatively unacceptable, similar needs to be levied at drink.

Same issue with drugs, prohibition doesn't work. Nor does lying - indeed that can be counterproductive. Legalise it, control it, be honest about it. So long as people are only hurting themselves and shouldering the burden (in tax) of any costs they might incur for healthcare, knock yourselves out.

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