Almost everyone knows the familiar sounds of sirens going off in honor of Every 15 Minutes, an event created to provide awareness about the dangers of drunk driving, which is funded by SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions). Drunk driving is an issue that has plagued high schools for decades. The question is, will this event make an impact?
The answer to that question is: yes. How powerful the impact is, however, has yet to be seen. The goal of EFM is to show students, in detail, the consequences unsafe driving can bring. Depicting a gorey car crash and a funeral, as well as taking select students out of class, provides a concrete glimpse into what it would be like to witness this sort of tragedy.
Even if the change is not drastic, helping even one person to think about this issue is worth it. Students are told again and again that drinking and driving is wrong, but when has that ever really gotten a teenager’s attention? Just as an abstinence only policy has shown far less effective than realistic reasoning, events like these are the best type of warnings against drunk driving.
Amongst students, it has always been unpopular to be ‘the worrier’, or the one who is too uptight. It is difficult to get through to a friend with statistics and scare tactics. Publicized all over school, EFM causes students to want to be chosen to participate in the fun. More important than fun, however, is giving the message that standing up against drunk driving is not only okay, but encouraged.
Those who have already experienced a traumatic event may want to take a pass, but the event will surely help those with the popular belief that they are invincible against these catastrophes. A big, public scene is exactly what teens today would respond to. Instead of a dry warning, students will surely be able to get into the action and at least some will carry those lessons with them.