Within a span of a couple of days two top highly experienced Australian editors are now facing the consequences of poor behaviour due to alcohol intoxication at two public events.

The editor-in-chief of independent publication Crikey and a former editor of The Sydney Morning Herald Peter Fray heckled, while in a state of drunkenness, at award winning ABC journalists at the Walkley Awards on Thursday 17 November held at the International Convention Centre in Sydney. He later apologised but stood down from his current position.

A day before on Wednesday 16 November Murdoch’s top editor, Chris Dore, editor-in-Chief of The Australian lost his job allegedly because of his drunken behaviour making lewd comments towards a woman at a party in California while on a visit to US. He had been at the company for 31 years.

Alcohol is a legalised drug in spite of its harmful effects on an individual’s health and behaviour as well as of those surrounding him or her.

As explained in a comprehensive article on alcohol by Dr Mohammed Naushaduddin in AMUST (November issue and online), “even in small amounts, alcohol causes changes in chemicals in the brain that leads to loss of self-restraint or inhibition and makes one feels some pleasure becomes confident and even brave.”

“Increase in alcohol doses depresses the brain’s general activity making the person very vulnerable to their environment, being robbed of material, dignity or person.”

“However, as the amount increases, lack of awareness triggers angry and aggressive response – making a person a risk to self and others. Depending on situations, one cannot predict the transition from a seeming confident state to an horrible nuisance state.”

Hence alcohol intoxication leads to uncontrolled behaviour in a person’s conversations, actions and judgements that has consequences for the person as well those around, that one regrets later.

Somehow there is an obsession with alcohol in social and sporting events for its advertising, consumption and distribution on a global level in general and in the West in particular.

Qatar, host of the FIFA World Cup came under heavy criticism when it officially banned alcoholic beverages from sale within the eight stadiums where the soccer matches were being held.

Gianni Infantino, President of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA)  gave a press conference in Doha, Qatar, the tournament’s host nation just before the tournament defending the restriction of alcohol consumption.

“I think that if you can’t drink a beer for a few hours here and there, you’ll survive. Especially because these kinds of restrictions also exist in France and Spain,” he said, referencing how the sale of alcohol is prohibited inside many stadiums to avoid violence caused by drunk fans.