Ashton Shepherd and Drinking and Boating

Where Ashton Shepherd comes from, drinking and boating apparently go together like “Beer on a Boat.” She has this to say about her new song:

Buddy Cannon, the people at the record company and I all really, really liked this song. We just weren’t sure how it would come across coming out of a female’s mouth. Each song on the record has its own little spot. Well, down where I live in the summertime, everybody goes to the river and hangs out. That’s going to be their song, I can tell you. When I listen to it, I just want to turn it up.

But a few seemingly harmless drinks can quickly lead to intoxication, and BUI (“boating under the influence”) can be just as deadly as DUI to the intoxicated, their passengers, and those who have the misfortune to cross paths with a drunken boater. Alcohol is reported to be the “leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents.” Public awareness organizations such as BADD work to get the message out, but it’s an uphill battle when major label music stars like Shepherd celebrate drinking and boating as harmless weekend revelry. Shepherd’s home state of Alabama recognizes that boaters can be impaired long before they get to 0.8 blood alcohol content, and that even a couple of beers can be a problem. How many weekend skippers really wait for their buzz to fully clear before throttling up? Shepherd’s not endorsing or promoting boating under the influence, and would no doubt disavow such behavior, but do we really need to celebrate the combination of alcohol and boats?

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