Drinking alcohol won't gain you respect

May 25, 2022 | 04:44 pm PT
Drinking alcohol won't gain you respect
People drink beer at a party in HCMC. Photo by VnExpress/Thu Anh
VnExpress readers weigh in on Vietnam's corporate drinking culture, saying work is no excuse for drinking to the point of passing out.

"Not unlike drug addicts, alcoholics will do anything to get one more shot in. But it is a bit different for those addicted to the fun associated with drinking. There are many excuses one can give to explain their drinking habits: to socialize, to close a deal or to prove oneself. Those who make drinking parties, or nhau, a way of life drink to gain respect among peers and for self-validation even at the expense of many other things. I never get how the ability to drink somehow translates into respect. It is just a beverage. If you don't enjoy drinking, why push yourself into gulping it down just because you think it would make others like you more? Why force others to drink when they refuse? I believe true friends stop you from drinking too much and not encourage you to drink until you black out."
Kinh Lup

"I am the director of two companies, and so I'm required to meet up with many people, but I don't drink. Alcohol has never been a prerequisite for doing a job well, and anyone who says otherwise is deluding themselves. I know many successful people, and most of them just drink a little wine from time to time. Say no to alcohol for the sake of your health."

"Everyone wants others to like them. Everyone fears missing out on opportunities to be promoted. It is why drinking often shows up in corporate culture. In the last 21 years I have been singled out by my boss many times because I don't show up often at drinking parties. I make no excuses for skipping sessions I don't like. Why should I in the first place? Most people at work would choose to 'keep the peace,' but if we keep talking about getting rid of the drinking culture without actually doing it ourselves, what is the point? It is too cheap, too easy to buy alcohol these days. Alcohol shows up on every occasion imaginable: Tet, weddings, funerals, meetings... and one drinking party a day apparently is not enough for some people. That should explain why there are so many alcoholics. And as long as alcohol sales bring in huge profits, it will never stop. Salespeople get all the cash, while we are left with broken livers."

"The alcohol tax is currently too low despite the fact that alcohol severely diminishes our health, mind and productivity. As society gets richer and the drinking culture worms itself into the corporate environment, people are drinking a lot more than they did in the past. I believe a beer should cost no less than VND50,000 ($2.16) for there to be a difference."
Tung Nguyen Thanh

The opinions expressed here are personal and do not necessarily match VnExpress's viewpoints. Send your opinions here.
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