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December 23, 1922


JAMA. 1922;79(26):2164-2165. doi:10.1001/jama.1922.02640260036016

To any one who follows the widely debated question of prohibition, it is evident that a variety of unlike considerations enter into the various arguments advanced. Some of them are essentially legal in character and deal with the constitutional question of so-called "personal freedom"; others are economic in bearing; and much of the discussion centers in sociological problems of admittedly great importance. It is doubtful, however, whether in ultimate analysis any aspect of the subject assumes greater significance in the responsibility for a rational treatment of the issues involved than does the physiologic evidence that can be brought to bear upon it. For example, as a recent writer1 on this topic has frankly admitted, to interpret correctly the mortality statistics relating to moderate drinkers and total abstainers, one must have some knowledge of the physiologic effects of alcohol in so-called moderate doses, a knowledge often lacking in those who