“That is why we all judge the newcomer less and less. If alcohol is an uncontrollable problem to him and he wishes to do something about it, that is enough for us. We care not whether his case is sever or light, whether his morals are good or bad, whether he has other complications or not. Our AA door stands wide open, and if he passes through it and commences to do anything at all about his problem, he is considered a member of Alcoholics Anonymous. He signs nothing, agrees to nothing, promises nothing. We demanded nothing. He joins us on his own say-so. Nowadays, in most groups, he doesn’t even have to admit he may be one, that he may already show the fatal symptoms of our malady.
“Of course this is not the universal state of affairs throughout AA. Membership rules still exist. If a member persists in coming to meeting drunk he may be led outside; we may ask someone to take him away. But in most groups he comes back next day, if sober. Though he may be thrown out of a club, nobody thinks of throwing him out of AA. He is a member as long as he says he is. While this broad concept of AA membership is not yet unanimous, it does represent eh main current of AA thought today. We do not wish to deny anyone his chance to recover from alcoholism. We wish to be just as inclusive as we can, never exclusive.
“Perhaps this trend signifies something much deeper then a mere change of attitude on the question of membership. Perhaps it means that we are losing all fear of those violent emotional storms which sometimes cross our alcoholic world; perhaps it bespeaks our confidence that every storm will be followed by a calm; a calm which is more understanding, more compassionate, more tolerant than any we ever knew before.”
-Grapevine, Bill W., July 1946
Here is a workshop from Mike F. on the 12 Traditions