From Outwood, Kentucky
Copyright © The A.A. Grapevine, Inc., July 1947
As a member of A.A. for two years I have enjoyed and received much help from The A.A. Grapevine. Bill’s articles are always tops.
I would like to add my humble opinion to certain questions which are discussed in our publication.
1. We must keep our anonymity as far as possible if we expect to be effective.
2. Stay clear of those who wish to popularize A.A. in such a way that eventually may lead to its becoming a racket. We do not need to appeal to the public in any way for funds. To commercialize A.A. is to destroy it.
3. Avoid as much as possible holding meetings in churches or any religious houses. The average alcoholic cannot be won through any creed or sect. He is skeptical of religion.
4. We are not out to dry up the world. As alcoholics we are sick people. The vast majority of people can still take their liquor or leave it. Those people do not need A.A. and may never need it. Let’s be tolerant with the nonalcoholic. As long as we “stick to our knitting,” live by our 12 Steps, and offer our help only to those who are powerless over alcohol and whose lives have become unmanageable and who are willing to go to any extreme to obtain sobriety, just so long will A.A. be effective.
We do not wish to travel the same road as the Washingtonians.
It is gratifying to see how A.A. has grown. I think this is due to its sincerity, the nonprofit motive, and the fact that most A.A.s are trying to live the 12 Steps. There is a heap of brother- hood in this organization which could be destroyed by commercialization in the very minutest form.