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Criticizes hospital event

Dear Editor,

The mission of the Hudson Hospital Foundation is to promote exceptional health care services in our community. So how does the Foundation harmonize that goal with their annual wine tasting event - a fundraiser that prominently features the consumption of alcohol?

Last year, the U.S. Department of Health listed alcohol as a "known carcinogen" for the first time. This came after a number of recent studies found a direct causal link between consumption of alcoholic beverages (even in very small amounts) and cancers of the mouth, larynx, esophagus, stomach, colon, liver and breast. Alcohol is no longer considered just a possible catalyst for cancer. It is now known to be a carcinogen itself.

The alcohol industry continues to cling to an old "study" purporting to show that consumption of alcohol provides a health benefit. This supposed research, however, has long since been discredited. That's why no doctor will advise you to drink, just as no doctor continues to suggest that a pregnant woman smoke to calm her nerves. The sad truth is that alcohol is a toxin. Ingesting a toxin has no health benefits, even if the alcohol industry tells us that their products are good medicine. What do we think of the doctors of the 18th century who prescribed a bit of arsenic each day for what ails you?

So why do our Hudson physicians allow their foundation to raise money by promoting the consumption of alcohol? Well, I guess we all understand that plying folks with alcohol does loosen wallets and purses. Perhaps the foundation should consider adding pull-tabs to its fundraiser next year and cash in on another addiction.

And, in addition to making lots of money up front, the foundation is creating a lot of new paying customers for the hospital on the back end: alcohol consuming patients with cancer, liver disease, hypertension, injuries and children with fetal alcohol syndrome. And let's not forget new candidates for the hospital's alcohol dependence recovery unit.

In fact, more groups should jump on the alcohol-based fundraiser wagon. Our local family counselors could have a beer tasting event. They need more clientele caught up in the devastation that alcohol creates in family relationships. The local auto body shops should throw a drink-and-drive event. That would create lots of fender benders to fix.

But seriously, our local physicians have taken the Hippocratic Oath. So why are they, instead, acting like hypocrites?