Monday, 2 November 2009

Poor choices

This is the result of the latest ‘teen tragedy’ – some idiotic 16-year-old getting drunkenly behind the wheel to maim and kill their mates, and any other unfortunate who happens to be on the road.

The press is full of predictable grief-stricken outpourings and hand-wringing about what wonderful beautiful souls these children possessed, how this terrific disaster is a result of their lack of social judgement, and how we should stop them from making such ‘poor choices’ in future.

No. I find these sycophantic semantics almost as repugnant as the act itself. Lack of judgement is preferring Trinity Roots to the Stone Roses. A poor choice is picking the red shoes over the black when you have nothing to match. Drink-driving is a deliberate decision. There is nothing wonderful, beautiful or excusable about it or the people who do it – whatever their age.

Today's spoiled darlings with their modified vehicles grew up in an age with the most aggressive advertising ever. They are bombarded with warnings about the dangers of alcohol, speed, and downright bad driving every day. There is no way that they can claim to be unaware of the consequences of their actions.

It is not a poor choice to drive drunk; it is attempted murder. And if you succeed in committing the crime, you should be punished. There should be no alternative. As long as there is another option, people will die on the road. It really is that simple.

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