Yes, I may sound like an old man and this post may seem like a rant, but I'm very serious. I'm not saying to throw back to the Prohibition era, but we as an alcoholic society need to re-evaluate how we treat and consume alcohol.
No, I'm not sitting on a soapbox, but after seeing a drunk girl lying in the street outside my house and being taken home by two boys (that's pretty normal out here in North America's number 3 party school) and waking up to vomit and what looked like a blood trail outside my building, I figured it was a good time to put out a blog post.
I haven't done any scientific research to compare the numbers, but I have a strong feeling that alcohol affects more lives - directly and indirectly - than cigarettes and smoking.
The three biggest things we hear about with smoking is second hand smoke, cancer, and heart disease. We see the commercials with the lady smoking out of her throat and the cartons with the pictures of damaged teeth and lungs.
But what about alcohol?
Yes, there is a huge campaign against drunk driving and MADD is known to all those around the country. But I think we should take it to another level.
I think every time you pick up a bottle of rum or a case a beer, there should be a photo of a child mangled in a car accident caused by a drunk driver. Another of a child suffering from fetal alcohol syndrome. One of a woman beat by her alcoholic husband. One of a kid in a hospital bed getting his stomach pumped.
And for the university students, there should be a big ol' photo of a herpes sore. Yes, a photo of genitalia (male and female) and a real image of how alcohol can lower your inhibitions (and commonsense) and put you in a situation where the risk of getting an STI is astronomically magnified.
You can't see your lungs and how that puff of smoke is killing you from the inside, but you can see that growing pile of puss annually when you go pee for the rest of your life.
Yes, I may sound facetious, but what scares a young man? Something that's wrong with his lungs, or what's in his pants?
And who can look beyond the correlation between Western being one of the top party schools in North America, but also having the highest STI infection rate of all Canadian universities?
Drinking isn't as innocent as we as a society like to celebrate. We all can't be Bristol Palin and be celebrated for having unprotected sex while drunk and having an illegitimate child by a future porn star.