Josh Hamilton Needs More Alcohol Classes

I have blogged about the uber-talented Josh Hamilton before. The star outfielder from the Texas Rangers has a long history of both alcohol and drug problems. He also is one of the most gifted players I have ever seen.

Everyone deserves a second chance and Hamilton most-certainly is battling demons. Remember once an alcoholic or drug addict always an alcoholic or drug addict. In other words, once you get addicted, it is for life!

That doesn’t mean you have to let you addiction victimize you. Staying sober will always keep the demons away.

As a 21-year-old outfielder in high Class A ball for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Hamilton, the No. 1 overall pick in 1999, left a game for personal reasons and was suspended by the team for more than three years because of drug and alcohol addictions. At that point, it seemed more likely Hamilton would wind up a cautionary tale told during rookie orientations than an everyday Major League baseball player.

Hamilton eventually got his problems under control and returned to baseball in 2006 as a 25-year-old, still in A-ball. He had 50 at-bats there, and the next season he started to terrorize major league pitching. He is a four-time All-Star, the 2010 AL MVP and came within one strike of being a World Series hero in 2011.

Fifty minor league at-bats at nearly the lowest level of the professional game are all Hamilton needed to get back on the baseball radar. I don’t care who you are—Albert Pujols, Hank Aaron or Babe Ruth—if you leave the sport for four years and don’t pick up a bat during that time, it should take you more than 50 at-bats to find the road back to superstardom. However, Hamilton is something of a baseball freak, a true phenom.

Relapse #2

Last January, Hamilton had his second relapse with alcohol. By all accounts, including his own, Hamilton has stayed away from cocaine, crack, pills and other drugs that gripped him early in his career.

In January 2009, Hamilton was drunk in a bar in Tempe, Ariz., and photos surfaced of him with college coeds. Before the photos even were released, Hamilton confessed to his family, the Texas Rangers and Major League Baseball. All was forgiven and Hamilton hasn’t failed any drug tests and hadn’t been seen drinking since then.

About three years to the day after that first slipup, Hamilton again succumbed to the temptation. He was drinking at a Dallas bar, before and after teammate Ian Kindler met up with him. Hamilton again confessed and expressed remorse and apologized to his family, his fans and the Rangers franchise.

For anyone with an ounce of understanding, sympathy or forgiveness, this news was heart-wrenching. Hamilton has transformed himself from the kind of person average Americans cross the street to avoid into a role model who has credited his Christian faith for his reclamation.

Baseball Equivalent to Robert Downey, Jr.

Hamilton’s first relapse became a source of inspiration. Yes, he screwed up after declaring himself clean, but he admitted his mistake and was forgiven. It showed how real his addiction is and how it can haunt him at any time. He remained a clean, sympathetic figure after that.

Our society wraps its arms around people like Hamilton. It so desperately wants to believe a 180-degree shift is possible because everyone knows someone like the old Josh Hamilton.

This latest mountain in the road—calling it a bump is underestimating the pull that substances have on Hamilton—surely will cause Texas to reconsider offering Hamilton a long-term contract.

He is an amazing talent. But we again have been reminded that Hamilton’s demons never will be exorcised and always will be only a drink or drug away. Hopefully, he will stay sober and become a role model the way Robert Downey, Jr. has.

Source: The Sporting News

Getting Drunk in Yemen Could Cost You Your Life!

Most people who live in Yemen never will know the taste of alcohol. Nor will they fall victim to its virulent talons.

You see alcohol is strictly forbidden in Islam. The Holy Quran clearly stipulates that alcohol is prohibited.

In an interview a 28-year-old Yemeni man said he often declined to so much as smell or look at an alcoholic drink. However, added stresses, including major political and social upheavals made him look for an escape.

Known only as “Farouq”, the young man claims that given the hardship the country was going through after a year of popular uprising which led to a meltdown of the country’s economic and financial institutions, many people turned to illegal substances to forget their problems and breathe a little easier for a few hours.

Farouk recalled how on one instance his friends expressed some concerns over his tense demeanor, saying that if he was to drink a beer or two he would feel much more at ease with the world.

Pimping Beer – Yemeni Style

They then took somewhere in the Hadda area, through a myriad of back streets. Lost the group of friends were asked by local residents if they were looking for “beers”.

He admits to being shocked that Yemeni shopkeepers would ever sell the forbidden beverage.

What did he think of his first drink at the age of 28? After he finished his drink, Farouq said that although he felt “cozier”, but not all that different.

He however said that he felt truly guilty of having so bluntly disobeyed God, swearing that he would never do it again. Despite Farouq’s guilt, his plight is part of a worrying trend as depressed and harassed people are turning to those alcoholic points to escape their problems.

No doubt government will continue to crack down on this problem so it does not get out of hand. I am tolerant of all people and all religions. I am certainly in favor of abstinence as a means for controlling alcohol consumption.


Oral Roberts’ Son Needs Oklahoma Alcohol Class

Do you need proof that alcohol makes people do stupid and reckless things? Why are so many people arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) because police officers catch them speeding? The latest to fall victim to this foible was Oral Roberts’ son, Richard.

Richard Roberts, former president of Tulsa's Oral Roberts University and son of the school's namesake Pentecostal televangelist, was arrested on suspicion of DUI and speeding

Why do these things always happen at night?

Shortly after midnight, an Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper caught Roberts driving a black 2006 Mercedes at 93 mph in a 65 mph zone on a highway. This according to the LA Times.

After stopping Roberts the trooper noted that he smelled strongly of alcohol.

The 63-year-old Roberts failed two coordination tests and his blood-alcohol level was tested at .11%, well above the legal limit of .08%.

Roberts was booked into the Tulsa jail and released a few hours later on $1,100 bail.

Roberts resigned as president of the Tulsa-based university, known for its towering sculpture of praying hands, in 2007 after he and his family were accused of abusing university and ministry resources.

Ironically, faculty and students at the university have been required to sign an honor code promising not to drink alcohol. Roberts received the honorary title of president emeritus of the university in 2008.

This is proof positive again that alcohol is a poison and really should be avoided at all costs. I would hope that Roberts takes an alcohol class and devote part of his time to helping youth avoid his mistakes.

Scottish Women Get Alcohol Education

With the Super Bowl passed it is a reminder of the power of advertising. This year sponsor’s paid $3.5 million USD per minute to air their message. Scotland is using a similar marketing blitz to curb the drinking of its women.

Drop a Glass Size

Ministers have launched a new blitz on middle-class drinkers with a new campaign that urges women to “drop a glass size”.

Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon wants women who regularly enjoy a glass of wine at home to cut back on their drinking, and says they should give up alcohol for two days a week.

The new “Alcohol Behaviour Change” initiative also includes the launch of an App which illustrates how alcohol can speed up the ageing process.

38% of Scottish Women Drink Too Much

Scottish Government research found that 38 per cent of women regularly exceed guidelines. The Government says a woman can spend less than £3 on drink and still exceed the weekly guidelines, while an estimated one in 30 female deaths in Scotland is alcohol-related.

Research has shown that most people who drink alcohol, particularly at home, have no idea of how much they are actually consuming. This campaign aims to show people how small changes to their drinking habits can have a significant impact on their health.

The “Drinking Time Machine” App for smartphones combines a person’s picture with details of their drinking habits to reveal how alcohol can result in a plumper face, red patches across the cheeks and duller hair and eyes.

The campaign will also feature three different sized wine glasses to show how making “a small change” can reap health benefits.

The Scottish have long been known for their drinking (like their neighbors the Irish, and other neighbors the English). These countries need more alcohol classes and continued efforts to halt drinking at the earliest ages before it stops. Parents, like the Scottish women targeted with this campaign need to be role models for their children as well.


DUIs are Dumb, Dumb, Dumb

We all know someone who has driven under the influence. We all know someone who has gotten got for a DUI. We all know someone who has done something really stupid and were totally blitzed when it happened.

A woman in Louisville, Kentucky was arrested on a DUI charge after she rear-ended another vehicle, according to So far it seems fairly normal.

Andrea Brown collided with another vehicle, seriously injuring the other driver. Both cars were totaled.

The 26-year-old Brown refused to be taken to the hospital, but police noticed she smelled heavily of alcohol, had bloodshot eyes and was slurring her speech.

Of course Brown failed field sobriety tests. How drunk was she? Brown's breath test showed a blood alcohol level of 0.258.

Brown told officers that she got off work as a bartender at Stooges between 4 and 5 p.m. and that she consumed at least four or five Redbulls mixed with vodka. She had no recollection of the wreck she caused and had no idea where she was.

It is disappointing officers did not force her to the ER as she likely had a concussion and alcohol poisoning. Hopefully she will take an alcohol class and seek help for what iis obviously a case of serious alcoholism.

Cable Guy Stupidity

A California Sheriff’s Department got a little more than it bargained for when they requested someone come to troubleshoot their Internet problems.

Randall Ramey, a Time Warner employee, showed up to the sheriff's office to fix some issues when officers noticed Ramey had alcohol on his breath. According to, when asked about it, the Time Warner employee told police he'd had approximately eight beers the night before.

Ramey was arrested on DUI charges. Talk about walking right into the mousetrap. Hopefully the 49-year-old Ramey will take an alcohol class and work toward preventing his DUI behavior in the future.

Mom Need Montana Alcohol Awareness Class

Is it just me or are parenting skills lacking nowadays? My mother may have drank alcohol, even gotten tipsy more than once, but she never got behind the wheel of the car totally loaded.

A totally bolloxed woman who rammed her car into a house now faces charges of endangering the two passengers in her car according to the Billings Gazette.

Jana Madeleine Lorenz from Missoula, Montana, was charged with two counts of felony criminal endangerment, misdemeanor driving while intoxicated and misdemeanor failure to obey traffic lights.

Officers were already looking for a suspect who had picked up a child from day care while appearing intoxicated when they got the call of a car hitting a house.

Police officers found Lorenz's gray Pontiac Grand Am had destroyed part of a cedar fence and damaged the west end of the residence. Both of the car's airbags had deployed in the wreck, and the house had a large crack in the west-facing wall.

The45-year-old Lorenz was still in the car with her two sons when officers arrived. She failed several field sobriety tests and admitted drinking for three hours at a Missoula bar before leaving to pick up one son at day care.

Lorenz and her children were treated for minor injuries after the crash. This is a scary story. If a drinking problem is so bad you don’t mind if kids are in the car, then detox and rehab are in order. A good online alcohol class and mandatory counseling are in order.

Do Pregnant Women Need Alcohol Awareness Classes?

Should pregnant women be forced to take an alcohol awareness class? There are so many pregnant women that drink and do drugs while pregnant you almost want to make an alcohol and drug class mandatory. I know my mother drank and smoked cigarettes while I was in utero. Is this all hype or should the law decide.

Should Bars Ban Alcohol Sales to Pregnant Women?

In one part of Australia, according to Times Live, bars and restaurants will not be allowed to sell alcohol to drunks or pregnant women if the Gauteng Liquor Bill is enacted.

The bill also prohibits the sale of alcohol to minors, and students in uniform.

This means bars and restaurants would be in breach of the law if they served alcohol to a drunken customer.

Not selling to drunks was tough to put into practice. No bar serves alcohol to people who are abusive and disorderly, but it is hard to know when to draw the line.

The bill is trying raise awareness that bartenders should not serve intoxicated people.

This would make so that a pregnant woman could not even buy a bottle of wine for a friend or a six-pack for their husband!

In a bar how is a bartender to know if a woman is pregnant. Women do not even show their “baby bump” until the third or fourth month. God forbid a barkeep asks a heavyset woman if she’s pregnant!

I for one think this bill is nonsense. As a political statement fine. What is needed is greater alcohol awareness through alcohol classes and counseling.

Whitney Houston Models Need for Alcohol Drug Classes

Can anything positive come from the tragic death of Whitney Houston? Like it or not celebrities are role models. Whitney Houston could be a role model for what can happen if you take drugs and drink alcohol to extreme excess. Perhaps, her death can serve as a positive beacon to help keep people from falling victim to her vices.

Houston's tragic and untimely death surprised much of the nation. Such a shocking death certainly has not escaped the gossip of the mainstream media.

Mixing Drugs is Dangerous

Though the results from her autopsy will not be available for some time, the singer, who has dealt with drug and alcohol addictions in the past, was reportedly abusing a deadly combination of alcohol and Xanax around the time of her death.

It is important to realize how dangerous the combination of alcohol and drugs like Xanax can be.

Xanax, also known by the generic name alprazolam, is in a class of drugs called benzodiazepines. Klonipin (clonazepam), Valium (diazepam) and Ativan (lorazepam) are included in the same drug class. Similar to alcohol, benzodiazepines work as a depressant in the body's central nervous system. These drugs can cause sedation, muscle relaxation, sleep-induction, anti-anxiety and amnesic effects.

Because of these inhibitory and sedating effects, benzodiazepines are widely prescribed for a variety of conditions, including anxiety disorders, convulsive disorders, pre-surgical sedation and insomnia. In fact, benzodiazepines are some of the most widely prescribed drugs on the market. One report found that 11-15 percent of the American adult population has taken a benzodiazepine one or more times during the preceding year.

Benzodiazepines Abuse on the Rise

When used correctly and by themselves, benzodiazepines are relatively safe. But, when combined with other drugs that have depressant effects, such as alcohol, synergistic effects occur that increase the sedating effects of the drug. This can cause enhanced psychomotor slowing, confusion, slurred speech, dizziness, memory impairment, depression, or increased irritability and aggression. Loss of consciousness and deadly overdoses can also occur.

Benzodiazepine abuse has been on the rise during the last decade. From 1998-2008, the number of those seeking treatment for benzodiazepine-related abuse rose from an estimated 22,400 per year to 60,200 per year. For drug abusers, benzodiazepines are rarely the sole drug of choice. One study found that 80 percent of benzodiazepine abuse is associated with other drug abuse, mostly alcohol or opiates such as hydrocodone, oxycodone and heroin.

Though we do not yet know the cause of Whitney Houston's death, it is certainly plausible for the combination of Xanax and alcohol to have contributed to it. The synergistic effect of the two drugs can easily and unintentionally harm anyone using the combination. Alcohol can interact with several medications, particularly with medications with depressant effects such as benzodiazepines. Even if a person has been legally prescribed a drug such as Xanax, it does not necessarily make the drug foolproof and safe.

Alcohol drug classes help. Counseling helps too. Greater awareness of the dangers are crucial. Perhaps one teen or adult will decide not to mix booze into their prescription medication and a life will be saved.


Denver Broncos Star Needs Alcohol Class

For the second time in less than a year a member of the Denver Broncos football team has been arrested and charged with driving under the influence (DUI).

Broncos running back Knowshon Moreno was arrested last week in Denver, Colorado according to the Denver Post. Moreno was the Donkey's 2009 first-round draft pick from the University of Georgia.

Evidently the 24-year-old was driving his Bentley up Interstate 25 doing 70 mps. The posted speed limit in the area usually is 65 mph but is currently posted at 45 mph because it's a construction zone.

Police gave Moreno a breath test and a field sobriety test and took the former Georgia star to a detox facility. He was charged with DUI, failing to have insurance and careless driving.

The Irony of it All

The personalized license plate on the car Moreno was driving read "SAUCED".

Moreno is recovering from surgery to repair a knee injury he suffered in a Nov. 13 game at Kansas City. Moreno lost his starting job at tailback earlier in the season to Willis McGahee, who ended up rushing for 1,199 yards in his first season with the Broncos.

Moreno, the 12th pick of the 2009 draft, is under contract for the 2012 season, the fourth year of his five-year rookie contract.

I am hopeful that having a strong Christian role model leading the team like Tim Tebow that the numerous off-field incidents will cease from the Broncos. At the least Moreno should take an alcohol class and seek counseling.

Is Alcohol Class to Blame in Dog’s Death?

As a counselor for alcohol awareness classes I am a stickler for my students arriving on time. I have had a number of excuses, but this one takes the cake.

A dog owner in southern Colorado, who was running late for "alcohol class," is accused of animal cruelty in the dragging death of his dog. This according to

The Alamosa County Sheriff's Office was flooded by calls spotting a green pickup truck was dragging a dog. One witness saw the man stop and put the dog in the back of the truck.

Where was Chevy Chase?

In a scene almost right out of National Lampoon’s “Vacation” starring Chevy Chase and Beverly Deangelo, the deputy who stopped the pickup said he saw a rope tied to a bumper. The deputy said he followed the rope into the bed of the truck where he found it tied around the neck of a dog.

Do not read this next passage if gruesome details bother you.

The hair and flesh on the right side of the dog's body was gone exposing his facial, torso and leg bones.

The dog's owner, Eril Rael, said he was late to an alcohol class and forgot he had the dog tied up behind the truck. Rael was issued a summons for cruelty or neglect of animals. Real pleaded not guilty on Wednesday.

Rael's pickup truck was equipped with an interlock device to prohibit anyone under the influence of alcohol from operating the vehicle. The Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles said interlock devices require a breath sample before the engine will start.

A History of DUI and Bad Driving

According to a criminal background check, Rael had several DUI arrests. The first one came in 2004 in Alamosa County. He had subsequent DUI arrests and convictions in Costilla County in 2005 and 2007.

Rael also was found guilty in Costilla County in December for being a habitual traffic offender.

The State of Colorado currently does not allow for online alcohol classes. If this story reveals anything, perhaps it should. Perhaps taking the course online would have saved the life of man’s best friend.