Cabrini: More responsible drinkers than Russia

By Mike Butler
November 30, 2000

Opinion by Mike Butler

When I think back on the September war between the student body and the administration, I tend to remember something that Dr. Laura Valente and Laurie Keenan-McGarvey brought up. I remember them talking about a lot of students having to go to the hospital because of alcohol poisoning. This was one of the major issues they brought up in meetings and on the radio.

Now the time has come for me to put their minds at rest with one statement which contains immutable truth: Cabrini College students who imbibe alcohol are more responsible drinkers than people in Russia.

How can I make such a claim? Read on.

According to a report by Reuters, over 20,000 Russians died of alcohol poisoning in the first seven months of 2000. Russian statistics cite that this is a rise of more than 43 percent from the same period last year. So whenever the administration wants to look down upon us students, we can always say that we’re better than Russia.

Why have there been so many alcohol poisoning deaths in Russia? Perhaps it has something to do with the Russian government raising taxes on vodka over the past year. In response to this, people are distilling their own moonshine, just like American did during the Prohibition years. The only difference is that the Russians don’t seem to know how or don’t have the right tools to make moonshine. But that’s not stopping people from brewing their own bathtub gin as Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin says that by “conservative estimates” illegal alcohol makes up 20 to 25 percent of the liquor in Russia. So practically one out of every four or five drinkers in Russia are drinking illegal moonshine.

As much as I admire the ingenuity of these Russian moonshine distillers, I must say that if you’re going to brew your own alcohol make sure you have the right tools, ingredients, and instruction before you try to become the Beer Baron or the Vodka Viceroy.

So what does all this mean for us at Cabrini? For starters, we’ve learned that if you make alcohol less available to people, bad things happen. We’ve also learned that we’re not really the rampant boozehounds that people think we are. Sure, we drink and a few people get out of hand, but we’re nowhere near the epidemic level that our administration thinks we are.

So to all those responsible drinkers out there, you are to be commended. For all those irresponsible drinkers that ruin our fun, there’s a plane to Siberia waiting for you.

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Mike Butler

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