Alcohol is the most harmful drug?
This world is really going crazy. Now, I must admit that I haven’t read the article in the British Medical Journal which states, demonstrates, whatever, that alcohol is the most harmful of all drugs; yet, using my humble mind I know it’s a…., well, you know what I mean.
When I studied statistics at school, one of the first things my teacher said was “You can make numbers to tell whatever you want; it just depends from what side you look at them!” Strangely it’s the same thing the head manager of a firm I was working at told me more than once.
Now, I’m not saying that alcohol isn’t a drug or that it doesn’t affect our health, I just have to walk around my city to see the effects of alcohol on some people. But saying that it’s more dangerous than other drugs is completely nonsense.
While it’s true that alcohol is considered a kind of “social drug” or an accepted behavior, and I can even agree that the effects of drinking alcohol are sometimes underestimated, we must take into account several factors about this statement:
- There are many different kinds of alcohol; drinking one liter of beer is far different than drinking half liter of whiskey.
- While alcohol has been with humanity for thousands years, most drugs have not.
- Time. Unless you try to drink the Thames in one day, for alcohol to affect your health a long time is needed, and if you don’t exaggerate alcohol has positive effects indeed on your health. Think about the French Paradox!
- Drugs like Ecstasy can kill you the first day you use them, not because you drive your car under its influence but because your body and your brain gets short-circuited.
- Crack can get you addicted in a very short time.
- Antidepressants or painkillers do the same too.
Everything that is abused can kill a human being, even Valium, Viagra, or aspirin. But putting on the same level a glass of wine, or a beer, as Ecstasy or Crack is completely crazy.
Before believing this kind of news, the best thing to do is ask yourself: who prepared this “medical study”? For whom do they work? Who pays their salaries? Are the numbers credible or are they just used a bunch of people? And the most important of all: who benefits from this kind of assertion?
It would be much a much better use of time, money, and resources to discover why these days so many people, and especially the young ones, have all this “need” to modify their reality. That would be the right thing to do.