Controversial Campaign Against Drunk Driving Halted

Posted by Steven Eversole | Jul 25, 2015 | 0 Comments

There are tried and true anti-drunk driving campaigns and slogans we see year after year. For example, most of us have heard the slogans like “drive hammered, get nailed” or “sober or slammer” and other similar sounding messages the organization Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) has created over the years to raise public awareness. You have also probably the seen the billboard featuring a suspect blowing into a roadside breath test (RBT) saying “you just blew $10,000” in reference to the cost of getting a drunk driving conviction.

Bar

However, from time-to-time, a state agency or non-profit tries to come up with a new campaign to convince people to stop drinking and driving. Sometimes, things do not go according to plan. According to a recent news article from WSMV, one anti-drunk driving campaign proved to be too controversial and had to be suspended.

This taxpayer-funded anti-drunk driving campaign based in Nashville, Tennessee has caused people to become upset. The campaign involved creating bar coasters and signs for bar and nightclub bathrooms. They contain messages about “buying a drink for a marginally good looking girl.” On the back of the coaster, it warns the reader that if he would do this, his judgment is impaired and so is his driving.

A server at one bar where the agency dropped off the coasters said she found this totally inappropriate. The campaign also featured posters in the men's bathroom telling viewers that, after drinking enough the “girls look hotter and the music sounds better.” The reader is then warned that if his judgment is impaired, so is his ability to drive.

While nobody is challenging the need for an anti-drunk driving campaign, many in Nashville are coming out against this particular campaign and many feel it is not inappropriate, but also insulting to both men and women. This controversial campaign was funded using taxpayer money when the governor's Highway Safety Office hired a Knoxville-based advertising/public relations firm to come up with the slogans and paid them around $80,000.

Some went a little further in their criticism, and a tax advocate associated with a non-profit organization said he is generally not in support of bureaucrats spending taxpayer money to “wave their bony little finger at us self-righteously and tell us how to live our lives.” Meanwhile, the governor's office said it was not happy with how the campaign turned out and is suspending it at this time.

As our Birmingham DUI defense attorneys can explain, regardless of what anyone may personally feel about drunk driving and drunk driving campaigns, anyone who finds themselves in a holding cell following a drunk driving arrest is only worried about getting out of the situation without going to jail and hopefully without a DUI conviction.

The most important thing you can do is to speak with an experienced DUI attorney as soon as possible. Some people are given the opportunity to plead guilty immediately after being arrested and told they will get out of jail, but this is not always the best course of action. A desire to get out of jail quicker may seem like a good thing at the time, but pleading guilty without first speaking with your own attorney may only set you up for failure in the future.

Additional Resources:

Controversial anti-drunk driving campaign suspended , July 14, 2015, WSMV 4
More Blog Entries:

User Rights: Testing THC Without a Breathalyzer, June 7, 2014, Birmingham Underage DUI Defense Lawyer Blog

About the Author

Steven Eversole

J.D., Samford University's Cumberland School of Law, Birmingham, Alabama B.A., University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama

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