Sunday, April 26, 2009

Discouraging Danes from drink

From the Danish newspaper POLITIKEN an account of the terror in the hearts of public health commissars as they ponder the reality of Danish alcohol consumption. One bit:
Minister of Health and Prevention Jakob Axel Nielsen (Cons) [says:] “Danish attitudes to alcohol are much more liberal that I care to see. This doesn’t mean that the government is preparing a ban on red wine, but we want to work on Danish attitudes to alcohol – not least in relation to our young people. In other countries around us, young people have a different attitude to drink”
Yes, we would not want any liberal attitudes, to be sure.

What is the remedy? Home visits by government temperance workers:
As a result, the Commission says that the obligatory doctor’s examination of three-year-olds should be changed to a home visit by a nurse to determine whether there is a negative alcohol culture in the family. If so, information and help can be offered to reduce consumption.
Seems to me it is the public health people with the "negative alcohol culture" not the people who responsibly enjoy consuming it. Maybe if the Danish program is successful enough they can match the binge drinking culture of the UK and the US which feeds on conflicting social messages about alcohol and the additional lure added to alcohol by its status as both a religious and a public health sin.

Hat tip: the anonymous Dane