Jackass star Ryan Dunn was killed in a horrific car crash this weekend. Dunn, 34, was behind the wheel of his 2007 Porsche 911 GT3 when it crashed and exploded into flames, killing both him and his passenger. Speeding was immediately determined to be a factor. Dunn was observed drinking no less than three beers and three shots of liquor prior to taking the wheel, but toxocology tests that would prove him guilty of DUI are still pending.

R&B singer Nivea was rumored to have recieved a DUI herself on Saturday after leaving the wedding of fellow-Lil’ Wayne-baby mama Toya and producer Memphitz. She quickly took to her Twitter page to denounce these claims, stating that she did crash her car, but that it wasn’t due to being intoxicated. However, TMZ has confirmed that she was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving and reckless driving. Neither she, nor her child who was in tow, were injured and she has not formally been charged with DUI.

Regardless of how the accusations in either of these cases are settled (tragically for Dunn and his passenger, being vindicated of DUI will mean very little), they do give us yet another opportunity to discuss drunk driving.

Most of us are particularly disgusted when a high-profile person is busted for driving while intoxicated, simply because we know they have the means to pay for a safe ride home and to deal with the ramifications of leaving their vehicle behind later. Unlike Joe Schmoe, a $400 towing fee should not break them. However, there’s no excuse for us “regular people” either. A $400 towing fee doesn’t seem like much when you compare it to the legal fees involved in a drunk driving arrest…or incarceration for having killed an innocent person …or to your own possible demise.

If we agree to let she who has never driven drunk cast the first stone, then my voice shall be heard second. I drove after drinking too much a number of times in college. While I don’t ever recall being “totally wasted” behind the wheel, if I wasn’t sober then I should not have been driving. I thank God that I never hurt a passenger, pedestrian or myself and I vowed years ago not to drive drunk (or “tipsy” or “nice”) again. I have also learned not to get in the car with intoxicated drivers, finding myself on a number of occasions having to fight car keys away from friends and acquaintances.

How many times have you heard friends say “I sober up as soon as I get in the car” or “I’m a better driver drunk than I am sober!” Utter bullsh*t. These people are confusing sheer luck with skill and are tempting their own fate and the lives of others.

When we hear of someone getting arrested for a DUI that has resulted in a death or serious injury to an innocent person, we tend to denounce them as some sort of monster. However, most of us know deep down that these people aren’t always so different than us. They have simply made a terrible, irresponsible choice…one that thousands of people make on a daily basis and have simply been lucky enough to to maim or kill others or themselves. Protect yourself and those around you. Don’t even think about driving after drinking if you haven’t had time to sober up. And don’t let other people do it, either. Imagine how many people may have seen Dunn getting ripped in that bar and then watched him walk into the parking lot towards a most horrifying fate. It didn’t have to end that way for him and it doesn’t have to end that way for anyone else.

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  • CountryGirlSmile

    Much needed article!

  • I’m still scratching my head over why Nivea’s fellow baby mamas allowed her to get into her car obviously drunk with her child in the backseat. Why was a toddler out at a wedding until 1:30 AM? If her boyfriend was able to come and take responsibility for the child after the accident, why didn’t the child just stay home with him? Besides the fact that Nivea could afford a cab or a tow the next day, what kinds of “friends” are these really?

    • zy

      it’s entirely possible that her friends didn’t know she was drunk. she may have seemed totally sober when she left them. the question should be why in the hell she would get in a car and drive with her child knowing full well she was in no condition to do so. i see where you’re coming from though because had they noticed she was drunk or tipsy, they shouldn’t have allowed her to leave.

      my friends and i have a basic rule, we will simply steal the car keys of anyone of us whom has had too much to drink (we will literally go into your purse, pocket, whatever and take them. period.) and they will not get them back until we have deposited them safely home or the next day when we see them. as friends, we’re a family unit, we look out for one another and i’ll be damned if i have one of my friends parents or loved ones calling me to ask why i allowed their son/daughter to get into a car drunk. i don’t need that on my conscious…

  • chanela

    ummm imma throw stones cause wtf? why would it even be considered a “let he/she who has___cast the first stone “situation????? this should NOT be considered a normal behavior. i dont want to be mean but just because you couldnt use good judgement in college when it came to drinking when you knew you had to drive doesnt mean everyody is that dumb. its so sad that so many people have that “its not gonna happen to me”mentality when it comes to things that can fcking kill you!! i have no sympathy for those people. just like i have no sympathy for amy winehouse. i cant stand stupid irresponsible people. if you KNOW you have your car why the hell would you drink?

    this is exactly why i dont care about my 21st birthday coming up cause the whole point of being excited is simply because of stupid alcohol. nothing good comes from it. SMH

  • I often wonder what the consequences are for a DUI for a celebrity, do they get their driver licenses revoked, etc?! I recently spoke to a young woman who was in this same situation and because she worked in a school, she got her professional licensed as a speech pathologist taken from her.She literally can’t work in another school in her state until she takes some DUI classes which are hella expensive the only route she could take was going back to school and pursuing another career. Those are hard lessons to swallow, but public embarrasment for celebrities seems like a smart price to pay.

  • Magnolia

    “How many times have you heard friends say “I sober up as soon as I get in the car” or “I’m a better driver drunk than I am sober!” Utter bullsh*t. These people are confusing sheer luck with skill and are tempting their own fate and the lives of others.”

    This! I have a friend that says this ALL the time. I love her and in my sheer stupidity during my younger days have gotten in a car with her in the past but never again. She’s told me one too many stories of passing out once she got home. Once on her front porch because she didn’t make it inside. Everyone was making such a fuss at Roger Ebert for telling the truth about drinking and driving and this guy was dumb for it. He didn’t just die but he also killed his friend. Would they be jumping all over Ebert is the driver lived and and passenger died? Doubt it.