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The NFL and DUI: One and the Same?

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Why is it so hard to not drink and drive? That’s a question the National Football League is asking. Again. Josh Brent of the Dallas Cowboys was arrested last weekend for intoxication manslaughter. He was treated for minor injuries after an accident that killed his friend and teammate, Jerry Brown. Athletes who put themselves and others at risk have a lot to lose. What makes it more alarming is that they could easily to hire a driver or take a cab when they know they are going to be drinking alcohol. What will it take for us all to realize that it is never okay to drink and drive? Brent was arrested in 2009 (while still in college) and pleaded guilty to DUI. He was sentenced to 60 days in jail, was fined $2000, sentenced to 2 years’ probation and to complete 200 hours of community service. Clearly, this punishment did not fit the crime, considering he offended again and took someone’s life in the process. Although the number of drunk driving deaths have dropped significantly due to the work of organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and Remove Intoxicated Drivers (RID), it is still considered one of the most deadly and preventable crimes. As reported in the Huffington Post, drunk driving and the NFL seem to go hand in hand: “A study by the San Diego Union-Tribune found that 112 of the 385 NFL player arrests between 2000 and 2008 involved drunk driving. In 2009, Cleveland Browns wide receiver Donté Stallworth, who had been drinking at a hotel bar in Florida, struck and killed a pedestrian.” Do NFL players think they are immune to things like drinking and driving? Do they think it can’t happen to them? Well, not only can it…it does. What do you think it will take for the NFL to stop the madness when it comes to driving under the influence? Share your thoughts about this matter with us below or on our Facebook page.

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