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 March 20, 2015

Christian Seder Meal Have you ever wondered what a Passover Seder is all about? Everyone is invited to attend a “teaching and demonstration” Christian Seder March 31 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Chapel 1 Annex. The elements of the Seder will be served as well as Matzo Ball Soup. The teaching demonstration...
 
 
Air Force photograph

Rosie the Riveter and me

Air Force photograph Staff Sgt. Alexandra M. Longfellow displays a tattoo of “Rosie the Riveter” to showcase how she became who she is today. The history of Rosie shows that with dedication and effort, anyone can do anythin...
 
 

Exchange rewards academic excellence with You Made the Grade Program

Besides handling daily schoolwork, studying and tests, military students face unique challenges, including coping with separation from parents during deployments and multiple moves. In fact, according to the Military Child Education Coalition, military children typically move six to nine times by the time they’ve completed 12th grade, with many making multiple moves during high school....
 

 

Celebrating the work that social workers do

March is nationally recognized as Social Work Month. According to the National Association of Social Workers, since the first social work class was offered in the summer of 1898 at Columbia University, social workers have led the way developing private and charitable organizations to serve people in need. And now, social workers continue to address...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Kenji Thuloweit

AFAF campaign taking off at Edwards

This year’s Air Force Assistance Fund campaign officially kicks off March 23 at Edwards, and the secretary of the Air Force approved a $5.97 million goal for this year’s campaign. The AFAF is a charitable fund by Ai...
 
 

Holy Week Schedule

Catholic April 2 – Holy Thursday, 7 p.m. (Chapel 2) April 3 – Good Friday, 5 p.m. (Chapel 2) April 4 – Holy Saturday, 8 p.m. (Chapel 2) April 5 – Easter, 9 a.m. (Chapel 2) Protestant April 3 – Good Friday, 11:30 a.m., service and fellowship (Chapel 1) April 5 – Easter Services Gospel...
 




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=""> <strike> <strong>