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Controversial campaign aimed at men for higher DUI rates

Crackdowns against drunk driving have been happening all across the nation, and Tennessee is no exception. When it comes to the toleration of drinking and driving, many governments are stepping their game up with stricter laws, harsher punishments, and more campaigns to raise awareness.

However, one recent campaign has sparked outrage among some. The campaign, reportedly aimed at the young male demographic, made sexist remarks that many people took offense to. The campaign was called out, at which point the state apologized for the offense. The official statement reported that it had not been the intent of the campaign to insult women. Rather, they were simply trying to get the attention of the young men. Opponents of the campaign believe that the message is lost behind the sexist remarks.

Shortly after the apology was made, the Governor’s Highway Safety Office released data showing that young men were up to three times more likely to be arrested for DUI than women. They claim that this is the reason their campaign had been directed at young men. From 2010 to 2014, it was stated that roughly 20,118 men were arrested for DUI. Compared to that, 6,709 women were arrested for DUI in the same time period.

The campaign has since been canceled, and items from it are no longer in circulation. Additionally, any items that were placed in bars have since been removed. It is unknown whether or not another campaign will be launched to reach the same audience, but without the sexist undertones that got this campaign sunk.

Source: WBIR, “TN data shows men arrested for DUI at higher rate than women,” Becca Habegger, Mark Bergin, July 21, 2015

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