Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Ok, I'm no fan of our DUI laws. Our legislators have gone completely overboard in drafting laws that ignore the standard rules of evidence, fly in the face of science, and run roughshod over constitutional rights. As we defense lawyers like to say, the Constitution doesn't exist in DUI land. I've read the ridiculous stories of a man getting a DUI conviction for riding his lawn mower in his own yard or the guy who walked his bike home, but still got nailed for "operating" a vehicle while intoxicated. That one's just stupid. Don't we want the drunkies walking home when they're too drunk to drive or ride a bike?

But I'm ok with this guy getting a DUI. When I first saw the headline, I thought it was going to be another story about insane application of DUI laws. According to that headline, the guy got a DUI for riding a barstool. Huh? On its face, that's a bizarre headline that makes no sense. Turns out, this was no ordinary barstool. This was a barstool attached to a lawnmower base. The vehicle topped out at about 38 mph. Our intrepid inventor was caught after crashing his unique ride. With 15 or so beers in his system, a DUI seems in order. Sorry, dude.

Nice ride, though. Bet it's fun to show off to the ladies.


Bob S. said...

How do you feel about sobriety check points?

Here in Texas we are fighting to keep from implementing them.

S said...

Probably not a surprise, Bob, but I am horribly opposed to sobriety check points. Stopping all motorists in a given area just to make sure they're obeying the law isn't how we're supposed to do things in the US. It's unquestionably a seizure under the 4th Amendment; I simply do not understand how anyone can justify warrantless seizures on the notion that it's not a violation of any individual person's rights because we're stopping everyone. Makes no sense to me. The argument that driving is a privilege not a right is a red herring. Whether I'm walking, driving, riding on a bus, etc, the right is not to be detained by police officers unless they have a warrant or reasonable suspicion that I'm up to something criminal.

All that being said, I have read that the Texas proposal is one of the most targeted, constrained checkpoint bills around. I still oppose it. Good luck with that fight.

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