Coronavirus and the Rise of Alcoholism
The consumption of alcohol has always been a controversial and polarizing issue within Christian circles. However, what is not debatable is that the overconsumption of alcohol can prove harmful to a person’s physical and emotional health as well as destructive to relationships. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse, alcohol is now the #3 cause of preventable death in the United States (not including traffic fatalities). Shockingly, during the Covid-19 shutdown, online alcohol sales have jumped a whopping 243% as people look for an escape or diversion from the collateral damage brought about by the pandemic. With that, total alcohol sales are up 55% year to date as most states have also deemed liquor stores to be “essential businesses”. Even more shocking, an April anonymous survey of professionals working from home found that 42% of them are drinking on the job.
This statistic is especially concerning because those addicted to alcohol drive the entire industry. Companies are clearly profiting by promoting and exploiting human addiction. Researcher Phillip J. Cook, in his book entitled “Paying the Tab,” discovered that the top 10% of heavy drinkers in America account for more than half the alcohol consumed each year. That is drinking about 74 alcoholic beverages per week (10 drinks each day) per individual. As you can see, it is not just social drinkers who are taking advantage of free time during quarantine, but those with serious addictions are delving deeper into their habits, increasing the likelihood of domestic conflict and even suicide.
Domestic abuse has become a heightened issue amid the nationwide lockdown. As people are forced to spend a large amount of time in close proximity with their families, the potential for violence and abuse is greater, especially as victims find it much harder to avoid dangerous situations and their abusers. What does domestic violence have to do with alcohol? Everything.
According to a report conducted by the Journal of the American Medical Association, 92% of domestic abusers were abusing alcohol not just in their lives but at the time of incident. That is an astounding statistic. Now consider the effect a 243% increase in online alcohol sales can have on cases of domestic abuse in the middle of a pandemic.
Samaritan House, a place of refuge for victims of domestic abuse in Norfolk, Virginia, saw a surge of new cases in late March. Executive Director Robin Gauthier said she is “very concerned about the families that are home, that are not going out, that are not reaching out to friends and family.” Not only is it harder to escape, but children are more likely to be exposed to cases of abuse and violence.
This crisis is not limited to the United States. The United Kingdom’s largest domestic abuse charity reported a 700% increase in calls to its helpline in one day. Not only that, but a separate helpline for perpetrators of domestic abuse looking to change their behavior received 25% more calls than in normal scenarios.
Alcohol companies are doing nothing to quell the crisis. Despite warnings from national governments and the World Health Organization (WHO) to be wary of the harm brought on by heavy drinking, companies such as Cheers have circulated advertisements encouraging the public to “#drinknormal” and stick to “usual drinking habits.” It is clear that these companies are more concerned with lining the pockets of their shareholders than promoting the common good and saving lives.
Big alcohol is Big Business! One which you might be unwittingly profiting from in the mutual funds and retirement investments you own. If you are concerned about this alcohol epidemic, we provide a free Portfolio Audit which identifies your investment exposure to companies involved in this and other biblical concerns (abortion, pornography, etc.). Let us help you invest in a way that makes the world a better and safer place! Contact us today at (540) 345-3891 or firstname.lastname@example.org
 Paying the Tab by Phillip J. Cook; https://gawker.com/who-drives-the-alcohol-industry-alcoholics-1639454291
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