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African Methodist Episcopal Church Review, Vol. 6, Num. 3
                     A TEMPERANCE TALK.        325

culated to destroy this order, lay the foundation of numerous
and painful diseases, and culminate in a premature death.
Drunkenness, says Dr. Beman, is itself a disease--a disease
which is performing the work of death with a more desolating
vengeance than the yellow fever or the plague.  In almost every
case, it proves fatal. Look at the drunkard! it is often difficult
to say, in taking the census, whether you ought to number him
with the living or the dead. He is already a naked skeleton or
a bloated corpse; a walking mummy, when he can walk; a mass
of animated putrefaction. He is dead while he lives. But
this evil comes not single-handed. Ask the physician and he
will tell you that it originates many of the most afflictive dis-
eases which are cutting down our dying race. By strongly
exciting the stomach, it soon destroys its tone, brings on loss
of appetite, induces dyspepsia, and lays the foundation for dis-
tressing and fatal complaints of the bowels. It produces in-
flammation of the liver, and this often terminates in obstruction,
enlargement, suppuration, and even schirrus of that important
organ. Jaundice and dropsy follow on in the fatal train. By
increasing arterial action, it preys upon the delicate structure
do the lungs, paints the hectic flush upon the cheeks, and heaves
the hoarse and deep-seated cough that prophesies of the sepul-
chre.  To this cause must be referred a large proportion of the
cases of rheumatism, and a still larger proportion of the gout.
It acts most powerfully upon the brain, producing inflammation
of that organ and its surrounding membranes, and, inducing
epilepsy, palsy and madness. But the most distrssing of all
diseases is the brain fever of the drunkard. If there is any in-
stance in which man, at the present day, is delivered over
soul and body, to the buffeting of foul spirits, the drunkard's
mania furnishes that example. The person who is afflicted with
this disease feels himself in hell while on earth.
  Intemperance inflames the appetite. To give the history of
the commencement of intemperance in every case would be im-
possible, for by the inventive genius of wicked men, the use of
ardent spirits has been introduced into almost all companies,
and made the bond of union in almost all friendship. No work
of magnitude can be begun, continued or consummated, with-
out the use of this deadly poison. What wonder, then, that
the habit should be formed while the occasions are so numer-
ous, and the incentives so strong to commence the practice of
drinking. No person, it is believed, suffers so intensely from
thirst as the drunkard. His appetite for strong drink becomes
so keen, that he will part with the very last cent he has on earth
to gratify his thirst. He will snatch from the very mouths
of his own offspring the last morsel of bread, that he may pour
it down his own throat in liquid fire.  Intemperance inflames
the passions. The principal passions affected by intemperance
are lust and anger. The former we leave for the consideration
of every individual, only remarking, by the way, that perhaps
not less than 99 out of a hundred of lewd persons, of both sexes,


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OHS/National Afro-American Museum & Cultural Center Serial Collection

African Methodist Episcopal Church Review, Vol. 6, Num. 3

Volume:  06
Issue Number:  03
Date:  01/1890


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