Saturday, September 02, 2006

Saturday Morning Finger-Pointing

Article in this a.m.'s NYTimes recounts the findings in a survey conducted over three years by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. This study found that south-central Wyoming led the nation with the highest rate of alcohol abuse by people age 12 and older. Teen binge-drinking. Big problem, especially in Wyoming, Montana, and the Dakotas.

Areas of the LOWEST abuse of alcohol among teenagers? The survey found this: "...some of the lowest areas for under-age binge drinking were in the nation's most densely packed cities -- parts of Washington, D.C., Detroit and Los Angeles. An earlier federal study found that rural youths ages 12 and 13 were twice as likely as urban youths to abuse alcohol."

O snap.

Our brethren on the far right love to point out the correlation between immorality among 1960s hippies and the decline of the nation. Is it just me, or do you recognize a correlation between binge drinking and a high proportion of Republicans?

Wyoming, Montana, and the Dakotas ... some of the most densely Republican states in the union. Dick Cheney's constituents. On the other hand, where binge drinking is far less a problem, in Washington, Detroit, and Los Angeles, these are heavily Democratic cities. Ain't that interesting.

Or frightening. You can get into the deeper motivations the article explores for out-of-control teen (and pre-teen) boozing (and we'll admit that life among majority Republicans is boring to the point of stupefaction), but all we can think of is that man in the White House ... a scion of boring privilege, raised in a cowboy culture, a binger in his early years who now leads this nation like an arrested adolescent.

America, salute your future!

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