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Call for a ride, or sleep it off, but don’t drink and drive

If you are too drunk to drive, pay for a cab, or sleep it off on a friend’s couch.

That’s a lesson I was taught as my parents incessantly reminded me that in no situation, no matter how little I though I’d had to drink, it was never worth it to try and drive home.

I didn’t realize this until later, but the reason for their heartfelt pleas was due to the loss of a best friend years prior in a drunk driving accident.  He was only 23 when an SUV careened across the yellow line and smashed into his car. His life was stolen from him before it had even begun.

In high school I was a part of a program called Shattered Dreams in which there was a simulated drunk driving incident that involved a few known students.

The message of the program was clear, the importance of not driving drunk.

The Shattered Dreams program was all about prevention, but I would never have been able to guess the kind of impact those few days would have on me.

It taught me that there are countless victims around the United States who die because someone wasn’t brave enough to just call a taxi or any other ride sharing service.

The few dollars spent on a safe ride home are minuscule compared to the amount of damage a person can do when driving intoxicated.

I know that the Fourth of July has passed, but there will be continued festivities this weekend.

Even if it was just one beer, or one glass of wine, do the right thing. Call a cab, an Uber, a Lyft, a sober friend, whatever needs to be done. Ensure you, and everyone else gets home safe.