Drunk driving continues to be a major epidemic across the United States. In 2014, 31% of vehicle-related deaths were the result of driving while under the influence of alcohol. One of the reasons that this crime continues to take the lives of innocent people each year is that celebrities keep driving drunk.
Although the punishments can be severe, celebrities usually get off quite easily. Granted, the incidents damage their reputations, but that only lasts a few weeks until their next blockbuster movie. When everyday people see these famous actors arrested for drunk driving, they become desensitized to the act and end up drunk driving themselves. It’s important that celebrities be held accountable for their dangerous acts. Otherwise, more people could get behind the wheel when under the influence, leading to a potentially fatal situation.
According to TV Cheat Sheet, there have been a few celebrities arrested for driving under the influence over the last few years. However, because of their high-profile status, the media forgave them and the general public forgot about their crimes.
Star comedian Tracy Morgan has continually struggled with his abuse problems. In 2005, he was pulled over for speeding and was subsequently tested for being under the influence. He blew a .13 into a Breathalyzer (the legal limit is .08). Then in 2006, he was arrested again after failing a Breathalyzer test and pleaded guilty to misdemeanor drunken driving charge.
Fast and Furious across Michelle Rodriguez has been an onscreen role model for children for decades, but in 2005, she was arrested in Oahu under the suspicion of driving under the influence. She pled guilty and paid a $500 fine and couldn’t drive for 90 days.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving is campaigning to require all drivers — no matter their celebrity status — be required to have an alcohol ignition interlock device installed, even for first-time offenders. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that interlock devices have shown to reduce repeat offenses by 67%.