A local attorney was recently arrested for DUI even though he didn't have a drop of alcohol in his system. He was quoted as saying "If it happened to me, you know it is happening to others".
Well Mr. Attorney, this is what happens when lobbyists write our country's laws. The DUI laws in America were radically changed due to lobbying pressure. Only one of the lobbies involved had noble intentions. The others were strictly about profit. M.A.D.D. wanted stricter DUI laws for the good of the community. It isn't too hard to figure out who stands to make money from having harsher penalties and changes made to the existing laws. If you guessed lawyers and insurance companies, give yourself a pat on the back.
I am not entirely sure how much an attorney charges for representing DUI clients but I would bet it is at least $1,000. Since only a fool would represent them self when going to trial, this is money that is going to change hands. Insurance companies on the other hand, are going to raise your rates and keep them there for 5 to 10 years.(or however long a DUI stays on a driving record). If anybody out there can comment how much your car insurance went up from a DUI, please do so. I have heard a handful of people tell me their rates tripled. You'd think their rates tripled because they had multiple convictions for it but that is not the case, at least with those that I spoke with.
I know a few people that have been convicted of DUI. They all tell similar stories about how much it cost them and one thing is for sure; when you see those signs that say DUI, you can't afford it, you better believe it. They all say that when it was said and done, their DUI cost them over $6,000.
That brings me to some interesting things about this subject:
If you have a CDL, your blood levels are half for DUI whether you are driving a commercial vehicle or not.
It is a common misconception that .08 blood level is needed for a conviction. Guess again, you can be found guilty of DUI with any measurable amount of alcohol. So unless you've never had a drink and drove, you've been at least potentially guilty of DUI.
The GAO did a study on the lower blood levels and found that they had absolutely no impact on alcohol related deaths or injuries since being made law.
Towns, counties, and states, lose money to run checkpoints. They do not make a profit on doing them. In fact, the only ones that make a profit from DUI convictions are insurance companies and lawyers.
The only form of profiling that is a generally accepted law enforcement practice is DUI checkpoints.
Studies have shown that many activities done while driving have the same, or in the case of texting far worse, impairment to your abilities to operate your vehicle safely. Only DUI is aggressively prosecuted.
You can feel free to add your own factoids. The simple fact is, what happened to the attorney that was arrested and forced to give a blood sample, is happening every day of the week to people that do not have his means to fight. Further, every single one of those in our local corruption scandal are facing less penalty (think Frank Pizella getting house arrest) than the average first time DUI convict and that bothers the hell out of me.
Invariably, some goofball is going to say that I am in favor of drunk driving so let me set a few things straight for you. I quit drinking some time ago. I do not use drugs. I think driving when drunk is a very serious problem. I think that at the very least, lower blood levels for DUI at least make some stop and control their drinking before driving a car. I know there is a very high likelihood of repeat offenses. I know there are problem drunks driving that have had numerous convictions for DUI and think that there should be some upper limit that after your (pick arbitrary number) conviction, you should not ever have a license again. I think that after your second DUI, you should be forced to have a device in your vehicle that won't let it start if there is alcohol(is this a law already?). I know the vast majority out there have in fact been guilty of DUI but just haven't been caught. My message here is an anti-lobbyist writing our laws message and inspired by Frank Pizzella getting house arrest. I hope no one that reads this will ever drive drunk again but I also know you will. I also know those that drive drunk aren't just risking their own lives but rather the lives of innocent people and in that, are as wrong as wrong gets.
As a side note, if you are a drinker, you should try quitting, you'd be amazed at how annoying drunk people can be when you're sober.