White folks and alcholism

I think this post belongs in general questions but I’m pretty sure white folks gonna trip so here it is. If a moderator disagrees, please put in general questions folder (I prefer it there). Anyway, while putting together a bunch of cites for a post in the BBQ Pit, it dawned me that many (though not all) of these instances of racism occur when white folks consume alcohol. I punched in a few words in Google and found this fascinating, peer-reviewed paper that shows a link between blue eyes and alcoholism(Here is a news article for us layman). I know. This is some scary ass, uncomfortable shit. You have some white folk states like Wisconsin where you can have your8th or 9th DUI and still get a vehicle. That’s nuts, but it isn’t nuts if blue-eyed folks in a blue-eyed State have a predisposition alcoholism. Could this be why prohibition failed so violently? Harriet Tubman didn’t do what Al Capone did (and slavery was much, much worse than prohibition). Historically, this makes sense, right? Alcohol is made of grains. White folks have only been consuming distilled grains for a few hundred years. This is a wild-ass guess, of course. Could someone please parse the paper? No arm-chair biologists, please. I’m already one.

(Before ya’ll trip, I am not suggesting white folks are all alcoholics. Thanks)

My Rand McNally is out of date. It doesn’t identify these “white folk states”.

I have no idea how WI compares to other states WRT to DUIs, but whenever I hear a comment like that I feel that it needs to be mentioned that just because you got a DUI doesn’t mean you have a valid license. Your license could be revoked from your 8th DUI, but if you get behind the wheel drunk, you’ll get your 9th.

I believe I’ve heard that our laws are lax and people always comment about in Wisconsin you can get X DUIs and still drive, so I’m not sure if there’s jail time (sooner) in other states or if people (or maybe me) isn’t understanding something.

Can the OP please clarify the debate…

Resolved: ???

Caucasians, specifically blue-eyed Caucasians, are more susceptible to alcoholism. States with a high proportion of blue-eyed Caucasians seem to have more lenient drink driving laws. This may also explain the utter failure of alchol prohibition in the twentieth century.

At least I think that’s the gist of it.


The latter part of the OP.

What? Racist nonsense.

So let’s take those one step at a time.

Interesting study. An association of light eye color with alcohol dependence. Hypotheses could include that those with light eyes tend to be more commonly of specific cultures that predispose to alcoholism, or that light eyes travel with a genetic predisposition to alcohol dependency. (Note nothing here comparing skin color, and no reason to assume brown eyes meant dark skin.) Support for the former was found in the fact that a gene associated with alcohol dependency was more common in the light eyed group. Very preliminary work though and could just be a fluke.

No information available that I know of on which states have more blue eyed people but if I had to guess I’d go with Minnesota with its Scandinavian heritage groups. And indeed slightly more binge drinking there than the national average. But DUI laws there pretty strict. And cold weather may encourage more binge drinking.

Also white folks, along with black, brown, yellow and red folk, have been consuming alcohol from before those racial divisions existed, from the beginning of society. Alcohol may have been more the driver of agriculture and civilization than bread was. Not just a few hundred years.

Not that many people have blue eyes. I bet there’s more black americans than blue eyed americans.

There’s a lot of middle grounds that are missing here.

  1. a) A lot of racist incidents happen when white people have been drinking. b) Blue-eyed white people may have a propensity to alcoholism. What’s the connection? Lots of people drink who aren’t alcoholics. Lots of white people drink, either as an addict or otherwise, who aren’t racist and who don’t do or say racist things.

  2. a) Prohibition failed. b) Blue-eyed white people may have a propensity to alcoholism. What’s the connection? I’m pretty sure there were lots of black and brown people, as well as white people, who were ignoring the 18th amendment or who were profiting from it by running bootleg hooch. Why did prohibition fail? Because white people like to drink? If (again for the sake of argument) there is a higher percentage of white people who are alcoholics than non-white people, that is still a very small percentage of the population. “Likes to drink” is not the same as “alcoholic.”

  3. a) Wisconsin apparently has lenient drunk-driving laws. b) Wisconsin is a majority white state (US census says around 87%). c) Blue-eyed white people may have a propensity to alcoholism. What’s the connection? Are white people more likely to oppose strict DUI laws? Is there any evidence of that? Might there not be other, more likely explanations (e.g., and just winging it here, lobbying from the alcohol industry)?

I’m not willing to parse your biology paper, I’m willing to take it as proved, for the sake of argument, that blue-eyed white people have a propensity to alcoholism. I don’t know why the OP thinks this is scary. As a blue-eyed white person, and the son, brother, grandson and cousin of a lot of blue-eyed white people, so what? None of these facts connect in any logical way.

I’ll give you this, at least for the sake of argument: a racist person is more likely to act out in a racist way, either orally or physically, if s/he has been drinking. If, for the sake of argument, you see more blue-eyed white people acting out as racists, and if it is because they are more likely to be drinking, it does not follow that more blue-eyed white people are racist. So I really don’t see what you get out of bringing this up.

“Harriet Tubman didn’t do what Al Capone did” - I have yet to figure out what the hell that has to do with anything. Al Capone was a gangster who made money out of selling illegal alcohol (among other things). Harriet Tubman also defied the law, only there was no money in it. What’s the connection? What’s the parallel?

If the OP can shed some light on what s/he thinks connects any of these facts, I would be willing to read it. Otherwise, the words “illogical hogwash” come to mind.

Yeah, more or less.

Thanks for the input. I also agree with this is very, very preliminary work.

(emphasis mine)

Nah, I’m straight. Feel free to move along. Thanks.

You’re free to email the author, Dr. Dawei Li, with your thoughts. His publicly accessible email is dawei.li@uvm.edu. Let us know what he says.

In any case, I regret making this thread. I realize now that this topic is way, way, way above the paygrade of the posters here. Thanks to DSeid for his analysis. I appreciate it. A moderator has permission to close the thread. I thought there was a large contingent of scientists here. My mistake. Thanks.

Alcohol is made of stuff that has sugar in it. Sometimes that’s grain, sometimes not.

Where on earth did you get that idea?

Not enough :rolleyes: in the world for this statement.

Speaking as a blue-eyed white guy, this is neither scary nor uncomfortable.

There’s this stuff called wine? Made from grapes? Europeans have been drinking it since about 4500 BCE.

Idk, but I think he called everybody dumb as he skipped out of the room. Hmmmm?