When Matthew Cordle, then 22, hit and killed a man while driving drunk, he originally pleaded not guilty. He confessed to the crime later via a viral PSA and a subsequent court appearance.
"I beg you -- and I say the word 'beg' specifically -- I'm begging you, please don't drink and drive. Don't make the same excuses I did [and get behind the wheel]," Cordle asks in the video, shot and uploaded by the nonprofit Because I Said I Would. He says he came forward in an attempt to prevent future tragedies.
"I can't erase what I've done," Cordle continues, "but you can still be saved. Your victims can still be saved."
The PSA clearly resonates with people, having been watched almost 3 million times since its release in September 2013. It hits hard, and part of its power comes from the fact that Cordle's story is true.
"This guy really did drive drunk, this guy really did kill somebody, this guy is in jail, and the other guy is dead," 18-year-old Adam explains after having viewed Cordle's confession in the Teens React video above.
That's also the reason why the React video from the Fine Brothers is itself so powerful. It contains real teens working out real problems they face on a day-to-day basis, from pressure from peers to arguments with parents and how they relate to drunk driving.
Drunk driving fatalities increase over holidays, so with Labor Day just around the corner, the video's message seems particularly important. And since youth are disproportionately affected by drunk driving and car crashes are the number one cause of death for American teens, their voices are an incredibly necessary part of the conversation.
Even though they all have different ideas on how best to address the problem, they all agree on one thing: "Don't drink and drive."