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The Delusions Of Drink

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King Solomon has the credit of being the wisest man that ever lived ; and he declared that he who isdeceived by wine, the mocker, and strong drink, the raging, is not wise. Tho delusions of drink are as old as drink itself, and are as prevalent now as in Solomon's timo. There are men who honestly believe that alcoholic drink is good for them ; yet there is not ono of them who would touch it except as a prescribed medicine if it were not for its pleasant taste. The delusion touehing its healthfulness grows out of the desiro to justify an appetito which may oither be natural or aoquired. If a man likes whisky or wine, he likes to think that it is good for him, and he will tako souie pains to prove that it is so, both to himself and others. Now, alcohol is a pure stitnulant. Thero is not so much nutriment in it as there is in a chip. It never added anything to the permanent forces of life, and never can add anything. lts inomentary intensifiíation of i'orce is a permanent abstraction of force from the drinker's capital stock. All artificial excitants bring exhaustioD. The physicians know this, and the simplest man's reason is quite capable of comprehending it. If any man supposes that daily drink, even in sro al' „fiu&iktit' i &yn d uaijM. &. sigglAh temperament, he may be able to carry his burden without much apparent harm, but burden it is, and burden it will always be. After a man has continued moderato drinking long enough, thcn comes a change - a demand for more drink. The old quantity does not The powers which have been insensibly undermined, clamor, under the pressure of business, for increased stimulation. It is applied, and the machine starts off grandly ; the man feels strong, his form grows portly, and he works under constant pressure. Now he is in a coudition of great danger, but the delusion ia upon him that he is in no clanger at all. At last, however, drink begins to take the place of food. His appetite grows feeble and fitful. He livea on his drink, and, of oourse, there is but one end to this - viz. : death ! It may come suddenly, through the collapso of all his powers, or through paralysis, or it may como slowly through atrophy and emaciation. His friends see that he is killing himsolf, but ho cannot soe it at all. He walks in a delusion froia his early manhood to his death. A few weeks ago one of our city physicians publicly read a paper on the drinking habits of women. It was a thoughtful paper, based on a competent knowledga of facts. It ought to have been of great use to thoso women of the city who are exposed to the dangers it portrayed, and especially to those who have acquired the habits it condemned. Soon af terward there appeared in the columns of a daily paper a protest frorn a wnter who ought to be a good deal more intelligent than he is, against the doctors conclusión. The health and physique of the beerdrinking Englishwoman were placed over against the health and physiquo of the water-drinking American woiuen, to the disadvantage of the latter. The man is deluded. It is not a year since Bir Henry Thompson, one of the most eminent medical men in Englan, - a man notoriously beyond the reach of any purely Christian considerations, - declared against the beer drinking of England on strictly sanitary grounds. Our litterateur declares that the Englishwoman can outwalk her American sister. That depends entirely upon the period of life when the task is undertaken. The typical Englishwoman who has stood by the beer diet until she is more than forty years old, is too fat to walk any where easily out of doors, or gracef ully within. During our lato civil war this matter of drinking for health"s sake was thoroughly tried. A stock of experience and observation was acquired that ought to have lasted for a centurv. Aerain and again, thousands ana thousands of timos, was it provod that the man who drank nothing was the better man. He ondured more, he fought bettor, he carne out ot the war healthier than the man who drank. Nothing is more easily demonstrable than that the liquor used by the two armies, among officers and men alike, was an unmitigated curse to them. It disturbed the brains and vitiated the councils of the officers, and debilitated and demoralized the men. Yet all the time the delusion among officers and men men was, that there were both oomfort and help in whisky. The delusions of driuk are nuinberless, but there is one of thom which stands in the way of reibvm so decidedly that it calis for decided treatinent, We allude to the notion that it is a nioo thing to drink nico liquors or winos at one's home, to offer them to one's friends, and tomake them minister to good fellowship at every social gathering, while it is a very different thing to drink bad liquor, in bad places and in large quantities. A man f uil of good wine ieels that he has a right to look with coutempt upon the Irishman who is full of bad whisky. It is not a long time sinco tho eloction of a professor in a British university was opposed solely on the ground that he neither drank wino nor offered it to his friends ; and when, by a small majority, his election was effected, the other professors decided not to i recognize him Koeially. There are thua two men whom these sticklers for wine despiso - viz. : the man who gets drank on bad liquor, and the man who drinksno liquor at all. Indeed they regard the latter with a hatred or contempt which they do not feol for tho poor drunkard. The absolute animosity with whioh many men in society regard ono who is conscientiously opposed to wine-drinkiug, could only spring trom a delusion in regard to the real nature of their own habits. The sensitiveness of these people on this subject, however, shows that they suspect the delusion of which they are tho victims. They claim to be on the sido of temporance. They deprécate drunkenness, and really don't see what is to be done about it. They wish that men would be more rational in in their enjoyment of thegood things of tho world, etc, etc. ; but their oyes seem blinded to the fact that they stand in the way of all reform. The horrible drunkenness of tho larger cities of Great Britain, with which no heil that America holds can compare for a moment, can never be reformed un til the drinking habits of the English clergy and the English gentry are reformed. With eleven-twolfths of the British clergy winedrinkers, and water-drinkers tabooed in society, and social drinking the fashion in all the high life of the realm, the workman will stand by his gin, brutality will reign in itsown chosen centers undisturbcd, and those centers will increasingly become what, to a frightful oxtent, they already are - festering sores upon the body social, and stenches in the nostrils of the world. The habits, neither of Great Britain nor America, will be improved until men of influence in every walk of life are willing to dispense with their drinking customs. Hundreds of thousands of English-speaking men go to a drunkard's grave every year. Thero is nothing in sanitary considerations as they relate to the moderate drinker, and.surely nothing in the pleasures of the moderate drinker, to mitígate this curse. It is all a delusion. The water-drinker is the healthy man, and the happy man. Spirits, wine, beer, alcoholic beveragos of all sorts are a burden and a bañe, and there is no place whero a good man can stand unshadowed by a fatal delusion, except upon the safe groundof total abstinence. Until that ground is taken, and held, by good men everywhere, thero can be no temperance reform. The wine-drinkers of England and America havo the whisky-drinkors in their keeping. What do thev propose to do with


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