Choose a better way in 2017

As the hands of the clock move ever closer to midnight on New Year’s Eve, our society increasingly and unabashedly glamorizes alcohol as a way to “toast in” 2017. Becoming intoxicated is often advertised as the way to feel good, socialize and celebrate. What’s wrong with feeling good and getting high? Nothing, if one ignores a host of bad outcomes; vehicular accidents, impaired judgment, reckless behavior, violence, dependencies, physical maladies and more. The effects of all intoxicants wear off, and the use sobers up and for many this then can lead into repeated unnatural states of intoxication in order to “feel good” again. Booze and pot (which is now advertised as medicine) like all drugs, including pharmaceuticals such as opiates, are some of the worst ways to feel good on New Year’s Eve.

In Iowa alone, there were over 2,380 alcohol-involved driving accidents last year resulting in 123 deaths and $20 million in property damages. Iowa’s drunken and drugged drivers are more intoxicated and killing more people over each of the last four years. Last year, nearly 14,000 lowans lost their licenses for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence.

Let’s all resolve to stop promoting and glorifying the use of alcohol and other drugs, not only this New Year’s Eve but at social events throughout 2017. Let’s all make the new year resolution and choose more health-enhancing and life-affirming ways to feel good and celebrate.