To the editor:

Alcohol, the beloved enemy.

I take that from a book written many years ago. Alcoholic beverages’ devastating effects on the human body, families and traffic-related deaths are well documented, yet they have complete acceptance by our society in general and are so available.

Just recently the Daily Journal, (“Two Drinks Too Many,” Jan. 18) referred to a U.S. government issued report by a panel of National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine. That panel made multiple recommendations including lowering drunk driving thresholds from 0.08 percent to 0.05, that states significantly increase alcohol taxes, make alcohol less conveniently available, including reducing the hours and days alcohol is sold in stores, bars, restaurants, (may I add, ballgames) and put limits on alcohol marketing while funding anti-alcohol campaigns similar to those against smoking.

Anyone who wants to give alcohol a pass should Google the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and review its facts and statistics. They are sad and scary. The call some people make to “drink responsibly” is in itself an admission of the risks involved. Social drinking in moderation is the gateway to drunkenness and anyone who sells or becomes an advocate of “drinking responsibly” takes upon themselves a fearful responsibility.

The endless tragedies that result from people under the influence of beer, wine, whiskey, etc., impact the lives of millions of people. Especially to the young people may I say, don’t let anyone intimidate you or shame you into drinking an alcoholic beverage. Don’t ever take the first drink.

Earl Stutsman