When I heard the news last night that Oscar Taveras had a blood alcohol level of 0.25 when he crashed his car and died last month(the legal limit in the Dominican Republic is 0.05), the first thought that hit my head was shame. That’s the same word that would hit my head if it was a person I knew and not a well known athlete. It’s the news that you don’t want to hear. The unfortunate headline. The unforgivable truth. It’s not shocking to hear what happened. He’s a 22 year old kid who didn’t know when to say when or understand the limitations that a heavy amount of alcohol can put on the nervous system. The result can’t be denied. Due to his Taveras’ carelessness, a young woman named Edilia Arvelo was also killed. This isn’t sunshine and rainbows news. This is brutal reality hitting home for every member of St. Louis Cardinals nation. It’s the last thing they wanted to hear but the truth reveals the painful shifting moral ground that the world operates on today.
My problem is with the outrage from certain fans who are mad the news reached the media outlets in the first place of Taveras’ last mistake. They are mad, supposedly, that the news of Taveras’ drunken activities was ever known in the first place. My reaction to that is outrage. Why should the public not know about the fallacy of their young star? Why not let the reporters do their job and inform the public? This is an area where feelings have to be shoved to the side in the name of journalism and facts. There is no room for vulnerability.
When Josh Hancock slammed his car into a tow truck while under the influence of alcohol and drugs while on the phone, I wanted the picture of his totaled and destroyed car posted in every cafeteria of every high school on this planet. Show the world what happens when people make mistakes, even athletes that they watch on television. The millions of fans who know Oscar Taveras’ name and want to be him when they grow up can learn from this undeniable tragedy. They can see the effect that one bad decision can have. The idea that actions have a legacy.
When I heard about Oscar’s fallacy, I wad mad. That’s the first reaction. Then I thought maybe..just maybe..this event can serve as a lesson to people. You shouldn’t drink a lot of alcohol, get behind the wheel of a car with another person in tow, and drive on wet roads in a sports car. It should make somebody think before they drink and drive. Take a second to ponder the thought and the potential future of one bad decision. That was the last thought I had. A pure and innocent hope.
Three days after Oscar Taveras died, I wrote an article about Oscar’s death being a lesson to us all. That became painfully true Wednesday night.
Be safe and have a good night,