Tag Archives: alcoholism

Legislator earns high praise

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Dan Huberty should take a bow and accept this small expression of support for a courageous act he took today on the floor of the Texas House of Representatives.

The Houston Republican acknowledged to his colleagues that he is an alcoholic.

“My name is Dan and I am an alcoholic,” he told fellow legislators in an emotional speech in Austin.

Texas state Rep. Dan Huberty apologizes to House after DWI arrest | The Texas Tribune

Huberty was charged with drunken driving on April 23 after he crashed his car into a minivan and failed a sobriety test. The incident occurred just outside of Austin. He told his colleagues today he has been struggling with alcoholism his entire adult life.

He apologized to them and to his family and acknowledged that he has completed three of the Alcoholics Anonymous’ 12-step program toward sobriety.

Huberty’s colleagues responded with a standing ovation.

It was richly deserved.

“Alcoholism is a serious disease,” Huberty said. “One that is becoming a pandemic in itself.” Yes. It most certainly has become a pandemic.

It’s not often that we see politicians lay open their emotional wounds in such a candid manner. Rep. Huberty isn’t my representative, but I want to applaud him for showing the courage it takes to find his way out of the darkness.

Time to 'dampen' Canyon

A little birdie has tipped me off to a possible sea change election coming up in a sleepy little town just south of Amarillo.

There might be a ballot measure up for decision this November that would determine whether Canyon, Texas — in the words of my little birdie-snitch — goes “damp.” He means voters could be asked to decide on a measure to allow the sale of liquor by the drink within the city limits.

My question is as it’s always been with regard to “dry” counties and communities: Why in this age of extreme mobility, when people can travel quickly from town to town, county to county, would you want to maintain a prohibition on the sale of liquor by the drink?

There once was a time — when we traveled by horse-drawn wagons or walked by oneself — when establishing dry communities made a modicum of sense. If you didn’t want people drinking in your town, then you banned it and forced them to stay in their own towns to drink until they passed out.

The invention of the automobile changed that.

Now we can drive from one city to the next. If your town doesn’t allow liquor by the drink, you get into your car and go the next city that does allow it. In Canyon’s case, it’s only about a 12-mile drive to the southern outskirts of Amarillo.

Another question: Why subject motorists, passengers — or other motorists — to those who might have imbibed a bit too heavily in Amarillo but choose to drive home to Canyon to sleep it off?

Am I condoning excessive drinking? Of course not. As one who only occasionally enjoys a cold beer on a hot day, I am acutely aware of the dangers of alcohol abuse. No one should fall victim to it and I do not wish our communities to become full of drunken sluggards.

My Canyon snitch said something about a meeting planned for Wednesday in which this ballot measure idea is discussed. I hope it produces a plan to proceed with an election.

I also hope the election occurs and the good folks of the Randall County seat decide to enter the 21st century.

Here's lookin' at ya, Gov. Perry

Texas Gov. Rick Perry has opened the can a little more widely as it regards homosexuality.

Oh, boy. Here we go again.

Perry went to San Francisco this week, where he attended the Commonwealth Club of California. He was asked: Is homosexuality a disorder?

His answer reportedly drew some gasps from the audience. He said that “whether or not you feel compelled to follow a particular lifestyle or not, you have the ability to decide not to do that.”

He went on: “I may have the genetic coding that I’m inclined to be an alcoholic, but I have the desire not to do that, and I look at the homosexual issue the same way.”


As I read those comments, I am surmising that Perry believes someone’s sexual orientation is a “lifestyle choice.” He believes people choose to be intimate with others of the same sex.

Interesting, eh?

His comments came after the Texas Republican Party went around the bend by approving a platform plank that endorses “reparative therapy” for gay people, meaning they can be counseled into becoming straight.

Oh my.

Now the governor of a major U.S. state equates sexual orientation with alcoholism.

I don’t want to repeat myself here, as I’ve covered much of this already in a previous blog post.

Allow me to just say it once more, with feeling: I do not believe one makes a conscious choice on their sexual orientation. It is part of their DNA. They are born straight or gay. There is no correlation between one’s sexual orientation and one’s affliction with drinking too much.