Getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after consuming alcohol is a crime. Duh. You hear this same thing all the time over and over from PSAs on tv and the internet, you have assemblies throughout your days in school: “It’s a crime. It’s a crime. It’s a crime.” You hear this so much it loses meaning. It’s like saying a word over and over until it doesn’t make sense anymore. Let me put it in different terms: If you get behind the wheel of a vehicle, ANY vehicle, after consuming alcohol, you are premeditating murder. The term “crime” doesn’t begin to cover what this action entails.
Here’s the thing, I don’t hate alcohol and I’m not telling you not to go out and have a good time. What I’m telling you is don’t be a death threat to yourself or others. Drink to your heart’s content, just don’t try to operate a vehicle afterward. Seems pretty easy, right? There are more ways to get home if you absolutely need to. Having a designated driver or paying a couple bucks for a taxi or an Uber is nothing compared to jail time, legal fines, or accidentally murdering another human. It’s not a hard thing to do either. With a myriad of easily accessible ways to get yourself home without endangering others and ignoring that and getting behind the wheel anyway is a conscious decision to potentially destroy your own or another’s life.
So listen up. Ignorance is a poor excuse and I’m about to destroy that weak excuse with this article alongside the literal THOUSANDS of other articles expressing the same concern and information about this topic. I’m even using other articles on drinking and driving to fact check my own work so I know how many there are and how easy it is to find them. Articles warning against driving impaired are everywhere.
What Drinking Alcohol Does To You
What will alcohol do to you? This is that “impairment” everyone’s talking about and the main subject of this article. The worst part is that some of these things begin to happen before you really notice it. Before you actually feel drunk. This is the danger zone. Whether you feel it or not, this is what alcohol’s doing to your body from the first shot or bottle:
What Does It Do To Reaction Time?
When you consume alcohol, it will alter the speed of your response to certain things. This is when you have to reeeeeally mull over the question someone just asked you or when your friend tosses you their phone and it smacks you in the face before you get your hands up to catch it.
This is also the thing that won’t let you hit your brakes in time before you realize you missed a red light. This is what stops you from swerving out of the way to save you from t boning another car after you couldn’t react to the stop sign. Driving is already pretty dangerous. Reacting to sudden danger on the road is essential.
What Does It Do To Concentration?
After a few drinks, alcohol will make it pretty hard to do some basic things: like focus. It’s like when you watch a movie drunk and it’s pretty and cool and fun but afterward… what even happened in that film? Or you’re mid-conversation and you realized you missed everything that cutie at the bar just said about themselves.
It’s also the reason you missed the car you just flipped merging onto the highway and the reason you find yourself heading directly into oncoming traffic because you crossed over the line. Concentration is the most important thing you need when driving. Take a drive anywhere in the entire world that has a decent amount of traffic and tell me you want to navigate that drunk. It’s hard enough driving sober with all the idiots on the road and you’re going to try that INTOXICATED?
How Does It Effect Vision?
Alcohol doesn’t just have ill effects on your noodle. It will also affect your body. One of the major things is your eyes. You wonder why you missed your cup? It looked farther away than it was and now it’s all over your lap. It’s also why the donkey across the room looks so attractive all of a sudden. The term “beer goggles” isn’t a myth, it’s a physical affliction.
If you can’t even tell which key goes to your car why do you think you’re ok to drive it? I’m sure the cops will totally be fine with the “that pole looked further away” excuse and I’m positive the person with neck injuries will be ok with you rear-ending them at a stop light and won’t sue you or press charges.
How Does It Effect Hand-Eye Coordination?
This is the classic clumsy inducing effect of drinking. Hand-eye and hand-foot coordination go out the window with booze. Loss of hand-eye and hand-foot coordination is the cause of you tripping on your own feet on your way to the bathroom and also the culprit behind you suddenly sucking at every video game you play.
Worse than that, it’s the reason you’re flipping your truck in the medium and the reason you hit the driver next to you into the ditch along the side of the road. If you can’t even walk properly what makes you believe you’re fit to be driving a 3-ton bullet at 55mph down a road of innocent people?
Does It Impair Judgment?
Alcohol impairing this function of your brain is arguably the most dangerous. You are entirely at the whim of your own judgment. This is your filter, your bad idea detector. If this is off, everything you do will be off. This aspect of the brain being altered is why your buddy thinks they could totally fight a bear if it came down to it and it’s also the reason you’re doing something as stupid as getting behind a wheel.
It’s the reason you’re about to harm or kill someone. I want to reiterate the danger I warned you about at the start of this section: Whether you feel it or not, this is what alcohol’s doing to your body from the first shot or bottle. Your filter is off. You don’t “feel” drunk but that means your judgment is already altered. It’s the scariest result of alcohol consumption. It stops you from making proper decisions.
I’m not going to go over statistics or how much jail time you get or even the ludicrous amount of money you will lose from drinking and driving. That stuff has been shoved down your throat for years. I’m telling you flat out if you get behind a wheel after drinking, you’re saying you’re totally ok with injuring or even murdering another person. Drill this into your sober head before you go drinking again. If this sentiment gets stuck in your brain, you’ll think about it even when you’re intoxicated and hopefully, that will allow you to stop yourself from doing something really dangerous.
Once more, I’m not against alcohol, I’m not against drinking, I’m not against having a good time. I’m against people trying to operate a vehicle that becomes a death trap and death machine when they’re drunk. I cannot and will not sugar coat this. Are you really ok with being responsible for paralyzing a kid from the neck down? Are you really ok watching a man try to drag his wife out of a car you overturned? Are you ok watching your friend die next to you because you thought you were “good” to drive? You know what alcohol does to you now. No excuses.