Using Shaq Tactics to Fight Impaired Driving
Celebrities are occasionally used in drunk driving PSAs, but rarely, if ever, as actors in a sketch. The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility (Responsibility.org) seems not to have read the playbook. Instead of staging an impassioned plea by a sincere-sounding talking head, FAAR has drafted Shaquille O’Neal to play a police officer in its latest drunk driving PSA.
The PSA deals with several kinds of impairment: drunk driving, of course, but also distraction, prescription drugs, and drowsy driving. This is probably the most important contribution the ad makes to public awareness. Too many people think they are unimpaired just because there’s no alcohol in their system. But a dead-tired driver is not going to respond quickly to road hazards – never mind someone on opioids.
It’s worth noting that O’Neal’s uniform is no costume – he is, in fact a reserve police officer with the Doral Police Department in Florida. He attended the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Reserve Academy while playing for the Lakers. He teamed up with FAAR last year as a spokesman for responsible driving.
All in all, it’s a pretty good use of a celebrity, and if not a slam dunk, it’s a fairly memorable ad. Our thanks to Shaq and FAAR for helping to fight the madness that stays with us 12 months of the year.
And if you still want that impassioned plea by a talking head, we’ve got it.
Your Hump Day Recess: Every Wednesday LifeSafer brings you something a little different, related to the worlds of road safety, to ease your progress over Hump Day and through the week.
Previous Hump Days: a German Ignition Interlock spoof from 1960, our Top 10 Worst Crash Tests, a different kind of Anti-DUI message, How Not to Dodge a Parking Ticket, the world’s worst traffic jams, a dramatic buzzed driving PSA , an offbeat ad from New Zealand, Vince and Larry, our favorite crash test dummies, some excellent Soviet anti-drunk-driving posters, a lesson on how buzzed driving can ruin your love life, South Australia to Drunk Drivers: Grow Up!, a woman calls 911 to report herself for DUI, Felix the Cat and Drunk Driving, DUIs who crash vintage cars – (ouch!), Woman Unwittingly Creates Self-Driving Car, A Brilliant PSA from Australia, Drunk Driving in 1910, a Superb New Think! PSA from the UK, Drunk Driving in 1955: New Breath Test Technology Will Save the Day!, the Best Animated Gifs About Drunk Driving, Angle Parking: A Surreal DUI Stop Photo, a Hertz Advertisement that Could Have Used Another Set of Eyes, a Laugh Out Loud Anti-Drunk Driving Ad, Who Knew? GM Invented the DUI Ignition Interlock in 1970 a souvenir from back when drunk driving was funny, a 50 Years On, a Dramatic sign Warns about Wisconsin Drunk Driving, a man Dances Through His Breathalyzer Test, and an Anti-Drunk Driving … Um… Throw Pillow?