D.A.R.E. And How I Will Change My Community

529 words - 3 pages

Like most teens, I am immersed in a culture that romanticizes drugs and alcohol. Throughout high school, many friends challenged my decision to abstain and encouraged me to experiment with drugs. I never wavered in my decision to say no. During fifth grade, I was tremendously impressed by a presentation by a local D.A.R.E officer (drug awareness and resistance education) in my community. He described the devastating effects of drugs on the human body and emphasized our choice to say no. I couldn't imagine that anyone could listen to his moving speech and still want to do drugs. During Driver's Education class, we watched videos that showed the deadly combination of drinking and driving. The graphically-depicted ...view middle of the document...

I remember visiting him in the hospital and being afraid of what looked like an erector set protruding from his stomach. I was pained by the horrible damage caused by drunk driving.Ironically, I also felt compassion for the terrible consequences facing the drunk driver. His conscience must forever carry the weight of two violent deaths and my cousin's serious injuries. The driver was held criminally liable for the accident, which will diminish his future opportunities. He will haunted forever by the permanent effects of one bad decision. After watching the ramifications for both my cousin and the guilty driver, it's become easier to say no to drugs.My commitment to abstinence shapes my social life in a positive way, as I surround myself with others who are committed to similar values. I attend parties with different groups, but avoid the pressure to experiment with alcohol or drugs. It isn't always a popular choice. Public service announcements claim that people will leave you alone after you say no and will respect you more. That's not always true. From my experience, people can be offended if you turn it down and will exclude you from their group. I know that my commitment to abstinence may cost me friendships, party invitations and acceptance into certain cliques. It doesn't matter. I respect myself and am proud of my decision. I won't let other people influence my better judgment. In my generation, the choice to drink and do drugs is a challenge that every teen much face. I am eager to embrace a future that is alcohol and drug-free and to promote the benefits of an abstinent lifestyle.

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