The perfect life does not exist because we have all made mistakes. And, if you use mistakes as valuable lessons in life, you have made a leap forward that some never understand or value.
One of these critical mistakes that can cause harm and injury can also cause death. In fact, there are literally thousands killed each year in North America because of this mistake – a mistake that can easily be prevented.
“Trying to grow up is hurting, you know. You make mistakes. You try to learn from them, and when you don’t, it hurts even more.” Aretha Franklin
The mistake I am referring to is drinking and driving. I know you probably have heard these kinds of stories several times, or many times. But, it is a mistake that must keep being addressed.
There are those who, unfortunately, feel that they can still have a few drinks and drive safely. This fallacy has not hit home to those who still drive after drinking. There are lots of excuses used by these people to allow themselves to forgive their lack of judgment – I’m really close to home, I haven’t had that much to drink, I’ve never had a problem driving, or, I’ll just do it this once.
The message should be very clear – you cannot safely operate a vehicle, or any motorized machine (snowmobile, ATV, or equipment) under the influence of alcohol.
These critical mistakes have caused harm for thousands of families through injury, death or severe on-going medical conditions like full paralysis. If anything is to be learned from these mistakes in judgment, and if anything good is to come from these terrible crashes, death and injury it is that those who survive learn to live without a loved one but only through forgiveness, and the ability to turn their sorrow to speaking out against drinking and driving, or to join groups that promote responsible behavior like M.A.D.D. (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), or to work within another local community organization that helps victims of drunk drivers cope with their loss.
In addition, the other really sad note is that this senseless destruction of lives is totally preventable. It is not acceptable that anyone believes that they are capable of driving after consuming alcohol and, in some cases, large amounts of alcohol. Yet, even in my rural area there are still those who drink and drive using the excuse that there are no taxis available out in the country.
For those of you who hand out the drinks, or serve drinks, you also have a responsibility. Maybe if the decision on alcohol consumption was a shared illegal activity in that accountability reached beyond the drunk driver, this malady, this lack of good judgment would start to change.