If we try hard enough, I bet we can blame the entire collapse of the American economy on some Lehman Brothers dudes who had too much Four Loko.
We’ve been following the successful crusade to get the original Four Loko banned because of its “dangerous” combination of caffeine and alcohol. Outlawing one specific mixture of alcohol and caffeine in a society where both alcohol and caffeine are abundant has always seemed stupid to me. It’s blaming a drink manufacturer for other people’s lack of personal responsibility. Four Loko, when enjoyed responsibly, was no more dangerous than any other alcoholic drink. When it was enjoyed by idiots, stupid things happened. Banning Four Loko just encourages blaming others for your own stupid and drunken behavior.
We recently saw what has to be the height of this Four Loko lunacy. A college student was shot to death last year, and now his family is suing the makers of Four Loko….
Look, either this suit gets thrown out of court, or there are going to be a lot of women suing Jack Daniels for domestic violence and Jose Cuervo for loss of consortium. Here’s the substance of the suit, from the Fresno Bee:
The family of Rod Fiorini, a Fresno Pacific University student killed in a police shooting last year, is suing the makers of the alcoholic energy drink Four Loko.
Brett and Pam Fiorini, who live in Bakersfield, are seeking damages for the wrongful death of their son. The lawsuit was filed this week in Fresno County Superior Court by Fresno attorney Bill Schmidt.
“Their loss of a young man with a promising future … was devastating,” Schmidt said. “They don’t believe anyone should profit from the sale of such a dangerous product.”
The lawsuit alleges that Chicago-based Phusion Projects, maker of Four Loko, created a dangerous drink causing Fiorini’s strange and violent behavior that ultimately led to his death.
According to reports, Fiorini was killed after pointing a shotgun at police:
A student and athlete at Fresno Pacific, Fiorini was shot and killed by Fresno police in front of his house on Wilson Avenue on Oct. 5, 2010. According to police reports, officers responded to a call from Fiorini’s roommate, who said the 23-year-old was “high or drunk and had a gun.” Fiorini came out of his house with a shotgun pointed at the officers. Police fired 63 rounds at Fiorini.
The police fired 63 rounds? Was Fiorini black? Were the cops the ones drinking Four Loko? Jesus.
Police were criticized for using excessive force, but the family won’t pursue a lawsuit against police or the city, attorneys said. A police spokesman on Friday declined to provide information about the investigation into the officer-involved shooting.
Look, I feel for Fiorini’s family, but Four Loko did not invent getting s***faced and walking around with a shotgun.
Does anyone else see the ridiculous hypocrisy here? The family is not suing the police — the people who shot this young man 63 times. The family is not suing the manufacturers of the shotgun — the dangerous weapon Fiorini was brandishing at police officers. Instead, they’re going after the drink Fiorini used to get drunk. What kind of world are we living in where a man gets drunk, grabs a weapon, gets shot 63 times, and we blame the drink manufacturer?
A world where the Food and Drug Administration decides that American citizens cannot be trusted with alcohol, caffeine, and fruit juice in a 23-ounce can. A world where parents blame advertising for their own failure to teach their children about drinking responsibly. A world where we’re willing to accept fewer personal freedoms in exchange for less personal responsibility.
Kind of makes you want to pour yourself a shot of “this is somebody else’s fault.”