ALCOHOLISM AS A SOCIAL DEVIANCE.
Slightly over two-third of all U.S. adult drink alcoholic beverages, some 166 million people out of a total of 150 million, including teenagers. Most of the adults are social drinkers who drink according to the norms of the groups to which they belong. Such norm has a great variation in what they drink, where, when, and the quantities. The various groups have different appeal for the different brands at different times.
An attempt to curtail this menace in the 1980s, made the federal legislators to tie funds meet for highway construction to a state’s enactment of laws raising the minimum age for drinking, so many states complied, resulting in a drop in the numbers of college students who drink, decrease in the habit of drinking and driving, and a decrease in driving after drinking. The establishment of about 4,500 treatment units, including 750 hospitals, 915 halfway houses or recovery homes, 2,400 out patient facilities are all measures to address to drinking habit.
Research shows that one in every thirteen and sixteen drinkers eventually becomes an alcoholic, although the line between problematic drinking and alcoholism in the U.S. is not well define, it is estimated that there are about 10 million alcoholics in the U.S.
Problem drinkers and alcoholism has pose a great social problem, in that it has cost the U.S. some 23,500 alcohol-related deaths on our highways, the U.S. business and industry lost over $21 billion in lost time, accidents, and other expense, heaving drinking was a factor in approximate 60% of major crimes, 70% of rape and incest and home fire.
Heave drinkers and alcoholism has cost so much than it has given, the total cost of sales for alcoholic beverages in the U.S. is put at $55 billion, but the social consequence to the society far exceeds the quoted amount.