Thursday, April 9, 2009

Perspective is a funny thing.

This is Nick Adenhart. Last night he pitched 6 scoreless inning for the LA Angels of Anaheim.

Just a few hours later he was dead.

Some jackass with alcohol issues ran a red light, slammed into the car he was riding in, and killed him along with 2 other people with their future right in front of them.

22 years old. Playing baseball and living the dream and in a split second he's gone; all because this idiot got behind the wheel of a car, smashed out of his mind and came to the conclusion that was OK.

We spend millions of dollars when some whack job tries to light his shoes on fire to ensure air safety. Random old women are subjected to full body cavity searches in airports everyday to ensure people getting on an airplane get safely to where they are heading.

Yet every night thousands of people who've been down at the local pub get behind the wheel of a 2 ton death trap, fueled by Budweiser and Jagermeister, and go barreling down the highway toward home.

Am I the only one who thinks this is seriously messed up? We wait for someone to get killed, THEN try to make it right. It's usually a case like this one, where a prominent athlete dies, for anyone to pay attention. What about the regular people who die everyday because some yahoo decides him/her getting home is priority one over everyone else who happens to be in a car that night?

Security checkpoints at airports, bomb sniffing dogs in subway stations across the country, and billions of dollars given to a bunch of geeks to try and figure out where the next big catastrophe is coming from and we still have everyday schlubs drinking $1 dollar drafts at the local, getting in their SUV's and plowing into innocent families just trying to get back home from Sam's Club without getting a divorce.

I say put one of those dillywompers you've gotta blow into before the car will even start in every freaking pile of sheet metal that comes off the assembly line from now on. In fact, I'll be the first guy to say put it on BOTH my cars from now on.

We live in a country with freedom of choice but apparently there are more of us who are too stupid, ignorant, or just plain selfish enough to actually think about our actions than I previously realized to deal with this, so make us all accountable.

I thought about this tonight while I was at home with Curly, Larry, and Moe and Ang ran to Wally World for the weekly supplies; and I didn't relax until I heard the garage door open. What would I do if this happened to her? Or what would she do if it happened to me?

To take it ever farther, what would I do if it happened to one of my friends like Tex? Or Rob and Jane? Or Josh and Amy?

This horses**t has got to stop. NOW. Our government spends billions on things that doesn't affect us in any way, shape, or form.

How about we take some of that money and try to figure out why there were 16,972 drunk driving deaths in 2005. Think about that for a minute; 16, 972 people died because somebody didn't have the sense not to get behind the wheel drunk.

Meanwhile, 3,000 people died on 9/11 and EVERYTHING changed. Don't get me wrong; I'm not denigrating the life of a single person affected by that horrible day. I'm just venting a little.

We can put a man on the moon, launch satellites into outer space, and look at Brittany Spears as a role model.

There has GOT to be a way to stop stories like Nick Adenhart's from happening again.

Tomorrow, I promise, I'll be back raging against the machine about Trot pooping in his pants or peeing on the floor; tonight? This story just made me angry. And sad.

Because it's such a preventable thing if only everyone of us would respect the value of a human life other than our own.


Tex said...

For starters, bars can stop having Happy Hour(s).

Beer/Alcohol companies can lower their alcohol content of their product.

But more importantly, each individual needs to take responsibility and use the DD approach. Designated Driver.

its not till it happens to us..that it becomes personal. Why do you think the organization MADD was created?

Ted D said...

Tex, I agree 100% with everything you said.

But if our government can regulate every aspect of our lives, make the automakers put that thing on every car that rolls off the assembly line. It's obvious that the majority of this country can't or won't assume personal responsibility; give some people some jobs and make it a mandatory thing.

Tree Newt said...

Sad, man. I hadn't heard about that. It all can change in an instant, no?

I'm with ya. If they make us wear seat belts and tell us what we can and can't say, do, think, why can't they come up with a way to keep a car from starting when a drunk takes the wheel? Seems simple enough. They want to retrofit our cars with a black box to track our every move, just put this on there with it.

Tex said...

I can tell you why it'll never happen...Lobbyists....donations to talks

I'd like to know how some people get several or more DWIs and never get behind bars.

think about it...if bars/restaurants had to be more accountable to WHO they were serving?? you do not have to be trashed to get a dwi. or be impaired in driving thereby causing an accident.

Ted D said...

It's really sad, Mattie. Such a preventable thing.

And Tex, the beer companies supply so much money to Capitol Hill that I realize it won't happen. But it freaking should.

Cyn said...

//For starters, bars can stop having Happy Hour(s).//

There is no "happy hour" in Massachusetts. But Massachusetts is, generally, looked upon as the state that stomps on fun.

It isn't just the government at fault here. It's the idea that drinking is great. Most of us promote this and no one does it more than Major League Baseball heavily promotes beer. They take a Joba Chamberlain and hold him up as a hero and a stand up guy even after he gets arrested for a DUI...MLB needs to take a stand on this as well as anyone else.

Really well done, Ted.

Nichole M said...

I saw him pitch. He was great. And would have been so much greater had he been allowed to show us.

Sarah said...

First, this guy was my sister's age... yeah, that was bad enough to think about. Second, I found out today that TWO of my friends at the bar tonight have recently gotten behind the wheel of a car drunk; one really messed up her car and got a DUI, and another fell asleep ON the wheel and pushed pedals while his brother steered - ALSO drunk. I was pissed.

Couldn't this be as simple as hiring a couple of bouncers to check on people? I realize it'd be hard to stop everyone but if even a FEW were watched more carefully, couldn't more of this be prevented?

Ted D said...

Well said, Cyn. Sports and alcohol are so closely tied that maybe they need to look into it a little more.

Nichole, it's a really tough thing to get your mind around isn't it? Just a sad loss.

Sarah, I really don't know the answer; I just wish people would THINK before stuff like this happens.