Too many beer cans and bottles on sides of roads

Published 10:21 am Thursday, June 21, 2018

Jerry Callison came into the office a couple of months ago, not knowing where else to go.

His concern? Beer cans and bottles.

Callison is a volunteer with the state’s “Adopt a Highway” program, and his men’s group at Hardison Methodist chooses to clean the sides of Jericho Church Road as it leaves Mocksville towards their church.

His concern is obvious. Not only are the people littering, but they are apparently drinking while driving. The highest concentration of the beer cans and bottles are tossed into a wooded area at the edge of town, he said.

“My biggest concern is, I have loved ones who travel that road … something could happen. I want to be more proactive. I can pick up the trash, but I can’t bring back anyone’s life,” he said.

He took his concerns to law enforcement, but the numbers of cans and bottles didn’t decrease. He took his concerns to the organizers of the Adopt a Highway program, and their response was even more disheartening: it’s like that all over the state.

Come on, guys, you’re making responsible beer drinkers look bad.

One can only wonder why people do this.

Maybe it is teenagers, who legally can’t drink alcoholic beverages anyway, and surely can’t at home. There are good reasons for it to be illegal for teens to drink. As we age (for some people, at least), we tend to be more conservative and make better decisions when it comes to safety. Already a novice at driving, even a “little buzz” could lead to a teen over-reacting or making a poor decision. Teens, wait until you’re 21. You’ll have your whole life ahead of you.

Maybe it is people who have just bought the beer and can’t wait to get home to drink one. Face it guys, you may have a problem. A few minutes isn’t going to make any difference.

Maybe it is an adult who isn’t allowed to drink at home. Guys, you likely have a problem, as well. You may need another home, or you may just need to change your ways. I knew a man once whose wife wouldn’t let him drink in the house. He kept a refrigerator in the garage, drank his beer there, and the marriage remained happy.

Any way you look at it, driving after having too much to drink is a bad thing. Drinking while driving is even worse. You’re breaking two laws when you do that and then toss the empties to the side of the road.

I saw a bumper sticker on a car the other day. “I am the evil twin,” it said. I’ll bet the “good twin” bought it for their sibling

Riding down US 64 West, I saw a turtle or terrapin crossing the road. I straddled it with my vehicle. Just ahead of me, a truck turned around and came back, and the driver, a volunteer firefighter, turned on the emergency lights to their truck, got out and rescued the turtle. We can’t thank these guys enough. They’re not only the ones who’ll risk their own lives to save your property, they’re the ones who will most likely be the first on the scene if you call for a medical emergency. And they’re pretty good at rescuing lost wildlife, as well.

Teachers at Davie County High School – who supported Jesse and Mindy Ledbetter as they dealt with their baby – are continuing their support. And they’re keeping Stella Ledbetter’s memory alive with a new scholarship in her name. Donations for the scholarship are being accepted at the Davie Community Foundation.

– Mike Barnhardt