EDITORIAL: Parents need to talk tough

Drinking drivers tend to be younger in spring around graduation time.

At least twice each year we see a real push from police against drinking and driving. Once at Christmas and again in the spring.

At Christmas, age is not a consideration for police, but in springtime, the target group is clear.

Drinking drivers tend to be younger in spring around graduation time. They are, frequently, young men experiencing what some would call the rites of passage.

Drinking and driving, however, isn’t a rite, it’s a crime – one with deadly consequences.

More than two years ago the province introduced Canada’s toughest impaired driving laws and the number of alcohol-related motor vehicle deaths went down by half.

But drinking alone is still a threat to our youth, whether they get behind the wheel of a car or not. From risky sexual behaviour to an increase in physical and sexual assaults to death from alcohol poisoning, the risk to youth from excessive alcohol use or drinking to get drunk, is real.

With any luck, the days of parent-sanctioned “wet” grad parties are a thing of the past.

With more parents and students concentrating on dry grad activities that have youth celebrating in a safe, non-alcohol fuelled atmosphere, one would think the old hay field parties of yore have been left in the past. But some parents still believe in the old adage, ‘kids are going to drink anyway, so we’ll just make sure they don’t drive.’

That is a difficult stance to take when, as a parent, you’ve spent the last 18 years of your child’s life trying to teach them right from wrong. Then you’re telling them that wrong is OK, as long as mom or dad says so.

As parents, it’s our job to make the tough decisions – even if they are not the most popular ones with our kids. All their lives we’ve made decisions for our children based on what we think is best for them. We’ve denied them sugary cereals. We’ve made them eat their broccoli. We’ve strapped unwilling toddlers into car seats, because it’s the safest way for them to ride.

It may not be the easiest thing you’ve done lately, but convincing your teen that drinking alcohol to celebrate is not a necessity and could bring them harm in ways other than the risk of driving drunk will make everyone feel better in the morning.

 

Just Posted

Comox Valley RCMP looking for suspicious man in Courtenay

Man was frantically waving at vehicles

Comox Valley golfers prepare for another 55+ Games

Competition, camaraderie name of the game

Comox Valley firefighters assist with wildfire effort

Four Courtenay firefighters are in Fort St. James helping with the fight… Continue reading

Woman rescued from Stotan Falls calling for safety measures

3L Developments did not comment on immediate plans to add safety precautions

B.C. declares state of emergency as more than 560 wildfires rage

This is only the fourth state of emergency ever issued during a fire season

Glacier View residents take a ride on the river

Ground Search and Rescue guides floaters on Puntledge

Authorities mull evacuation order for Zeballos

Smoke billowed from the steep hillsides of Zeballos on Friday evening, as… Continue reading

Safeway union urgest rejection of mediator recommendations

Says mediator asks for too many concessions

Fire chases B.C. crews out of their own camp

Crews in Burns Lake had to leave after a wildfire reportedly overtook their sleeping quarters

To address peacock problem, B.C. city moves ahead on trapping plan

Surrey’s new bylaw focuses on ensuring people no longer feed the birds, ahead of relocation

Hospitals to see ‘delays’ in care after losing Saudi students, health group says

About 1,000 Saudi residents called back to kingdom after suspending diplomatic relations with Canada

Bernier diatribe against ‘extreme multiculturalism’ boosts Liberal coffers

Party spokesperson Braeden Caley says online donations doubled, social media engagement quadrupled

‘Disjointed’ system hinders British Columbia First Nations in wildfire fight

More than 550 wildfires were burning in B.C. and crews were bracing for wind and dry lightning

MasterChef runner-up an award-winning broker

What started as an interest turned into a global pursuit

Most Read