On the battle between the alcohol industry and the public health lobby

Peter Matters writes: Re. “Drunk on moral superiority: public health lobby’s nonsensical alcohol policy” (yesterday). Of course one cannot tell the kids what to do or what not to do – at their age they know everything, as you and I did at their age. The reasons for their compulsive drinking are the pressures of a decadent, aimless and profligate lifestyle – the rat race of out of control consumerism and the binge drinking is simply one of the varied attempts at escapism. If kids learned from a young age the key to repose, they would be no binge drinking. Instead, they would get taught from an early age to get their hands dirty growing things in a garden, listen to music rather than the noise and gyrations of second hand sexuality, attend the local community theatre or even join it, get used to a paint brush in their hands past preschool, learn to make things with simple tools as well as running around kicking a football or climbing a tree. If they were taught at school that a gracious life style was more important that a meal ticket, kids with such a background would not ever look at grog or drugs.

Gary James writes: It is hard to take Bernard Keane seriously when he repeatedly quotes an unnamed “senior public health figure”.  If said “senior public health figure” lacks the courage to identify themselves publicly, why should we value their opinion?  If Bernard Keane doesn’t want to lose these great quotes, he should own them for himself.

Allan White writes: Bernard Keane is right of course, but the problem may be that politics and business are seen to do very little that encourages us to trust them to do anything that may impede their power or profits.

Peter Fray

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