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"...The church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."
I Timothy 3:15

The Madness of MADD

Dean Robinson

Just recently in Austin, Texas, during the monthly meeting of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, a group of representatives and members of MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) met with the commission to protest against "happy hours." "Happy hour" may be defined where a bar or restaurant offers reduced-price drinks during a specific hour on a particular day. There is nothing "happy" about it when you consider the curse that alcohol has brought upon the entire human race.

A woman who was part of the MADD organization appeared before the commission in protest of happy hour because her 19-year old son was killed in a one-car crash in 1987 after going to an Austin bar during happy hour. His blood alcohol was more than twice the legal limit. This grieving mother testified before the commission: "I know that if he had not drunk so much that night, he would have made it home alive."

I feel sorry for those who have lost friends and family members as a result of drunk driving and drunk drivers. I agree that there is a need to eradicate drunk driving and keep drunks off our streets. We should eliminate all "happy hours." But the main focus of our protest and campaign ought to be against the sale, manufacture, and use of the satanic slop itself.

Quoting from Earl F. Dodge in the National Statesman, he said: "Efforts to deal with the results of the consumption of beverage alcohol such as a crackdown on drinking drivers and rehabilitation programs are needed. But none of these deal with the cause of the problems."

MADD and the woman whose son was killed in Austin should have been upset, not just because this 19-year old got himself drunk during happy hour, but because he was drinking, period!

It seems hypocritical to me that organizations such as MADD, SAAD (Student Against Drunk Driving) and others vigorously protest and object to drunk driving but yet see nothing wrong with drinking intoxicating alcoholic beverages. The only sure guarantee against drunk driving and drunk drivers is total abstinence. If everyone would be obedient to the teaching of God’s Word regarding this matter of drinking, there would be no alcohol problem today in America.

The number one drug problem in our nation is alcohol. According to a report by the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, there is compelling evidence "that alcohol must finally become a primary target in America’s so-called ‘war on drugs.’ " Over 10 million adults show symptoms of alcoholism and 7.2 million more are alcohol abusers. Nearly half of all traffic deaths are alcohol-related.

Drunk drivers are eight times more likely than sober drivers to have a fatal crash. Twenty-five percent of those hospitalized have alcohol-related problems. Alcohol abuse and dependence will cost the country over $136 billion. Experts in the study of alcohol and its effects say 100,000 deaths a year are due to alcohol.

For all its carnage and human misery, alcohol is still a "legal" drug. Controlling illegal drugs is very difficult when legal drugs like alcohol and cigarettes are so freely available and widely defended. Because it is not often considered a drug, alcohol is all the more dangerous and deadly.

The 1986 National Institute on Drug Abuse Survey of High School Seniors, conducted by Dr. Lloyd Johnston, University of Michigan, revealed that 91 percent of high school seniors had used alcohol at least once; 54.9 percent admitted they used it before the 10th grade; 62 percent thought binge drinking (five or more drinks in a row) was okay to do once or twice on the weekend; 75 percent did not think it is a great risk to take a drink or two every day.

Despite the fact that alcohol is the number one killer of the young, only one teenager out of four consider it a dangerous drug. Two out of three think cigarette smoking pose a greater risk. Among our young people, regular use of alcohol is nearly 3 times more common than regular use of marijuana and 10 times more common than cocaine use. Alcohol kills 30 times as many young people as all other drugs combined.

The logical and reasonable thing for Mothers Against Drunk Driving to do is to change their logo from MADD to MAD–Mothers Against Drinking. Abraham Lincoln once said that alcohol was "a cancer in human society, eating out its vitals and threatening its destruction." Just remember, "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise." (Proverbs 20:1).