About twelve score and one year ago – time flies, doesn’t it? – our forefathers signed an angry but well-considered document now known as the Declaration of Independence. Essentially, it said that the Colonies were splitting with Britain for:
- Not letting colonists pass the laws they wanted to
- Controlling judges and axing them when they didn’t behave
- Sending troops to the colonies and forcing colonists to essentially run a free B&B for them
- Messing with American trade
- Denying colonists trial by jury
That’s just a few of the infractions that led Jefferson and his pals to blow off King George. Today we celebrate this unprecedented fight for liberty by:
- Roasting hot dogs
- Selling mattresses and hot tubs at crazy prices for this weekend only
- Taking to the roads and crashing our cars
Not everyone does these things, but a distressing number of people still crash their cars and SUVs on July 4th weekend. It’s understandable, considering that you have many stressed-out, tired and distracted drivers (the kids are in the back seat, remember?) on unfamiliar roads.
And you have alcohol. Independence Day always signals a spike in DUI crashes and arrests. The barbecue leads to the beer or margarita, and then more beers or margaritas, followed by a very ill-advised drive home.
The event that inspired this weekend’s holiday was, in part, about the right to pass “laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.” It seems strange to pass something as wholesome and necessary as an anti-drunk-driving law, and then defy it because you can’t be bothered getting a designated driver to bring you home.
This Independence Day, you can honor the founding fathers and their bravery by obeying one law that is truly “necessary for the public good”— the law against impaired driving. How? By not driving drunk on July 4th.
- Designate a driver. If you’re a couple traveling, let one stay sober for this party. You can trade off on Labor Day.
- If you see a friend about to drive drunk, stop him or her.
Do it for your friend. Or for your own peace of mind. Or, like our founding fathers, for the public good.