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There is no acceptable percentage of deaths as it relates to teens. No matter the cause, no matter the data or the research…nothing is acceptable. So when I read studies like the one in USA Today by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), I am ambivalent with my feelings.

Not because I am negative about this organization or the study they just released but because it still leaves me feeling a bit helpless. If all we do is analyze the latest studies so we can pinpoint the source of the problem then I feel we are simply attempting to stop the hemorrhaging. I repeat…not even one teen death is acceptable, especially if it is due to underage drinking.

The following statistics are based on 2010 data analyzed from the FBI, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The breakdown of teen deaths is all related to underage alcohol use.

  • 32% traffic fatalities
  • 30% homicides
  • 14% suicides
  • 9% alcohol poisonings
  • 15% other causes

Ecclesiastes 3: 2 says that there is “a time to be born, and a time to die.” I know that we are not going to stop death. However, there is no need for the senseless death that comes to our students through underage drinking.

What have you done to educate your students – and your own children  in this area?

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