June 18, 2008
Alcohol and Mixed Messages
If it is that alcohol brings about such a number if negative issues, why is it not only legal, but in some cases accepted?
Although it is that we have placed a limit on what we as a society will tolerate, we still allow the use and consumption of a potentially unhealthy, dangerous, and even deadly substance when consumed at sometimes even moderate amounts. So why is it that there is even the mixed message that exists in our society?
Alcohol has made its way over time out from just the taverns and bars from coast to coast. Once you also factor in the number of restaurants, sporting events, fairs and festivals, hotels, and night clubs, just to name a few, alcoholic beverages have become a typical part of everyday choices. Liquor stores and package shops are not the exclusive venues any longer for purchases.
Now with a simple trip to the grocery store, or at a stop to get gas at the local convenience store, an adult can make a legal purchase of anything from cans to bottles, cases and in some locations even kegs of whatever alcoholic beverages they may want.
Alcohol exists in many places throughout our advertisements today and they all help to reinforce the concept that alcohol is both acceptable and “cool”. These ideas combined with accessibility can be confusing. From glitzy and sophisticated magazine advertisements to some of our funniest, and most memorable television commercials, alcohol is advertised for no other purpose than to get the product sold.
We look forward to our favorite band’s tour that’s sponsored by a liquor label, or watching during Super Bowl halftime to see which beer commercial makes us laugh the hardest, never thinking that the promotional product could be harmful. People we look up to such as professional athletes and movie stars who affiliate themselves with alcohol either by their actions or advertisements can also send the message that alcohol is “cool.”
Warnings have not stopped alcohol usage, so we need to create other deterrents in addition to the ones currently in place.We as a society can choose not to glamorize alcohol, in turn making it less “cool.” We can say no to advertisements and commercials promoting alcohol usage. The message can be sent out emphasizing and supporting a healthy and safe lifestyle free from the use of alcohol.