Greetings! Today we shall start a new series entitled Health & Alcohol. If you know anyone who may benefit from these studies, we encourage you to please share!
Health & Alcohol
Tobacco is a narcotic; so is alcohol. In the same group are marijuana, opium, morphine, heroin, and cocaine. While their actions differ, they all are dangerous. Alcohol makes a man into a greater nuisance in society, and does it quicker than tobacco; its temporary influence on the brain and nervous system is immediate and disastrous; one glass of beer disqualifies a person for driving an automobile or bearing any other responsibility. The user begins with what he calls “moderation” which he thinks is safe, but which ends in disaster.
A Striking Case of Moderate Drinking
A physician wrote the following letter, which reveals the effect of moderate drinking upon the organs of the body: ‘Here is a story that will interest you as a worker in the field of alcohol education. It is not heresy but an experience in the medical world.
‘A prominent young man of this city died recently of ‘moderate’ drinking. He had never been ‘drunk’–only ‘happy’; but after three years of it he paid for it with his life. I was called at the last minute, but nothing could be done. He did not respond to any kind of treatment. I never knew why until I saw his body opened at the autopsy and viewed his organs. His heart was but a mass of degenerative fat instead of muscle. His liver was doubly enlarged, pitted and hardened and scarred–chronic alcoholic hypertrophic cirrhosis. His lungs appeared sclerotic, as did his kidneys, and were irregular and pale. His stomach and bowels were pale and fatty externally, but congested and reddened and thickened throughout the mucous membrane lining. His spleen and glands were swollen and congested.
I had known him for twenty years and never knew that he drank. He was never ill, but told his wife, ‘If I am ever sick, call Dr. Ritchie.’ and so she did, but it was too late. When I arrived I worked feverishly and called another physician, but no therapy or heart stimulation or adrenaline had any effect. I have told you the reason. The last three years they said he had drank moderately but daily.
‘The autopsy surgeon removed a piece of tissue from each of the above-named organs and sent these to the pathologist in charge of the laboratory of an accredited Class A Medical College. A microscopic study of these organs revealed the irreparable damage alcohol had done to the vital units or cells comprising these organs. No other cause for death could be discovered.’
The Dire Consequences
To the extent that alcohol is used, the intellect is benumbed, the mind confused, the difference between right and wrong disappears, the reason is paralyzed and dethroned, the will becomes impotent and loses the power to choose the right and resist the wrong; the power of habit becomes so strong that the will is overborne, enthralled, and degraded until the user has no power to break the snare. Everything depends on the right action of the will.
Slowly the conscience becomes dormant and there is no guide to moral conduct. The senses and all the noble powers of the mind are perverted, the moral perceptions are dulled so that corruption and debasement result. The animal passions are excited, sensual indulgence, licentiousness and adultery follow. The emotions degenerate – love to passion, joy to orgy, ardor to impatience, and courage to recklessness.
The brain becomes maddened, vice and crime of every description are multiplied, violence, strife, and bloodshed follow. Delirium and insanity are sometimes the climax of what might have been brilliant careers. All of the fine ideals and aspirations of life are blighted. Love of the good, pure, and noble is destroyed. Thoughts of spiritual and divine things are extinguished. Man sinks to the level of the brute. And then he passes his weaknesses on to succeeding generations.
When it is realized that ‘the prosperity of a nation is dependent upon the virtue and intelligence of its citizens,’ it must be evident that we are headed for national ruin unless some saving influence be applied in a stronger way than is now operating. Most alarming of all is the rapid increase of drinking among women and girls.
A Quote to Note: “Tobacco and liquor stupefy and defile the user. But the evil does not stop here. He transmits irritable tempers, polluted blood, enfeebled intellects, and weak morals to his children, and renders himself accountable for all the evil results that his wrong and dissipated course of life brings upon his family and the community. The race is groaning under a weight of accumulated woe, because of the sins of former generations. And yet with scarcely a thought or care, men and women of the present generation indulge intemperance by surfeiting and drunkenness, and thereby leave, as a legacy for the next generation, disease, enfeebled intellects, and polluted morals.” 4T 30, 31
Grab a friend and share the wealth, from what you’ve learned in the School of Health! In next week’s class, we shall look into the question, Is Alcohol A Food? Until then. God bless!
Tell us what you learned from today’s class, in the comment section, below!