Health & Safety

December 20, 2013

Another DUI message?

Tags:
Master Sgt.Birch Rypka
31st Test and Evaluation Squadron

The Edwards AFB DUI awareness sign located at the intersection of Lancaster Blvd. and Fitz-Gerald Blvd.

I know! I know you think you have heard it all on this subject, but please don’t stop reading!
I know you have received hundreds (if not thousands) of DUI briefings over the course of your careers, but despite all that time and attention, DUI briefings don’t work.

What’s that you say! It’s true and I can prove it. The next time you are driving by the building that used to be the gas station, on the corner of Lancaster Blvd. and Fitz-Gerald, and safety permits, take a look at the DUI board.

While writing this commentary, it says that we’ve had 14 DUI’s this year.

Those are 14 people that have been briefed a thousand times not do drink and drive but did anyway!
So I maintain … DUI briefs don’t work, at least not all the time, and what’s more, I know why they don’t work. I have interviewed dozens of first sergeants and a handful of command chiefs and the story of the DUI is almost always the same: “I had a couple of beers over a couple of hours and I felt fine”. There are two problems with the aforementioned statement. The first is “a couple,” while literally meaning two, has a vague definition when applied to alcohol users. When they say “a couple” do they mean a couple an hour? A “couple” right before they got in the car? It’s murky at best, and it goes to support my theory when the Blood Alcohol Content is revealed after just “a couple” of beers.

My second issue with the DUI story is the “I felt fine” part.

To that last bit I say, in the loudest voice polite for your work area, “Of course you felt fine! You just spent $5 a pint to feel fine! That’s what alcohol does. It’s why people like it.” Nobody in the history of man would say, “You know what? I think I am going to get me some of that rotten grass water” if it didn’t make them feel good.

I know folks like the taste of alcohol, but if it wasn’t tied to feeling good, hardly anyone would do it. If you don’t believe me, ask yourself when was the last time you had a good long sip on a non-alcoholic beer?

I am a United States Air Force First Sergeant and to some folks what I say matters.

I say this, I don’t hate alcohol, but I hate DUIs. I hate what they do to our Airmen’s careers; I hate what they do to our units and I hate the potentially disastrous effect they can have on human life. I remember being asked as an Airman in Airman Leadership School, “What can we do to prevent DUI?” I think the answer is the same now as it was then.

Every single one of us has to walk over to a mirror, look deep inside ourselves and say “I will not drink and drive, period, ever” and mean it. On that day, we will happily stop the briefings.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

News Briefs July 24, 2014

Webster fall classes Webster University will be running the following classes this upcoming fall terms: FINC 5000 Finance, Aug. 17-Oct. 16, Wednesdays 5:30-9 p.m.; and FINC 5880 Advanced Corporate Finance; Oct. 19-Dec. 19, Wednesdays from 5:30-9:30 p.m. Each term/class will have the same 10 students for both classes. Call 661-258-8501 or visit Webster University at...
 
 
edwards-F35a

Joint Strike Fighter ITF ground testing F-35 gun

Lockheed Martin photograph by Darin Russell An F-35A, tail number AF-2, fires a burst of rounds down range at the Gun Harmonizing Range July 17. The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Integrated Test Force at Edwards AFB is in the proce...
 
 

The unseen leader

Over the years, I’ve seen many leaders come and go. The ones I admired, I took note of the traits I wished I had, as well as the ones I already possessed. It took me a long time to realize some of my personal and professional weaknesses were the very areas I gravitated toward in...
 

 
Air Force photograph by Patric Lovato

Outdoor Rec provides excursions, arsenal for summer activities

Air Force photograph by Patric Lovato Members of the Edwards AFB Outdoor Recreation staff pose with one of ODR’s new paddle boards. ODR offers anything from surfboards and wet suits to mountain bikes and kayaks for your s...
 
 

NASA’S American Eatery (Bldg. 4825)

July 27-30 Lunch Specials 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday Three pieces fried chicken Mashed potatoes and gravy Vegetables Tuesday Pork carnitas Refried beans and Spanish rice Wednesday Pepper steak over white rice Thursday Teriyaki chicken Fried rice and egg roll Friday Bake cod Macaroni and cheese Broccoli All Blue Plate Specials — $7.89 Drink...
 
 

Final rule puts more teeth into Military Lending Act

The Defense Department July 21 closed loopholes to protect U.S. men and women in uniform from predatory lending practices, President Barack Obama said this morning at the 116th Veterans of Foreign Wars National Convention in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The heightened level of financial and consumer-rights protection against unscrupulous practices, called the final rule of the Military...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>