by Peter Twitchell
Alcohol is a chemical addiction in the YK Delta, has been for generations and will be for generations. Some of us learn the hard way.
The first time we went to jail for an alcohol-related offense is a lesson we should have learned. If we drink and end up incarcerated, we shouldn’t drink anymore. Some of us have a criminal history involving alcohol related offenses a mile long. When are we going to learn?
We should learn the first time we go to jail that something is definitely wrong.
We’ve gotten away, for too long now, driving a motorized vehicle while buzzed and intoxicated. This is not normal behavior. A car, truck, motorcycle, boat, plane, sno-go, are meant to be operated by sober individuals, not people who are intoxicated. Drinking and then driving these motorized vehicles is asking for trouble and, unfortunately, the day will come when you will hurt someone or yourself.
This is final, you’ve been warned many times by getting incarcerated, by these pending results. Drinking and driving don’t have a good ending. Drinking and driving will result in the end of your freedom, and the life of another person or persons besides your own.
Many of us have not come to realize yet that one day alcohol will get us. The Yup’ik word is “pitaqeq.”
Without realizing it we are hunting for a life, ours or someone else’s when we get behind the wheel after we drink. It’s always been a gamble. Some of us have been spared the dread of spending the rest of our lives locked up, like caged animals for lack of a better word.
Let’s look at the reality of drinking and driving. We are wild, careless, mindless, insane and crazy when we drink and drive.
As hunters we always get what we’re hunting for, and eventually, you will take a life or your own when you drink and drive. It is not a pleasant thought! Driving is a privilege.
When we go and get our permit to drive, we are always so happy and satisfied when we get our driver’s license and car. This is a privilege we earn.
We abuse our privilege to drive a vehicle when we drink and operate a motorized vehicle. Every vehicle should have a sign inside that you have posted which reads: “NO ALCOHOL OR DRUGS ALLOWED, BEFORE AND DURING OPERATION OF THIS VEHICLE.”
They used to talk about smart cars that won’t start when the operator has been drinking. I sure hope this is going to be in place soon in every motorized vehicle, because, you and I come from a school of hard knocks, and we can only learn the hard way, after we’ve taken someone’s life or our own on the road.
Really think about what is going to happen before it happens to you. Don’t drink and drive, thank you.