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Drunk driving policy

Sunday 11/7/21

Stop making excuses for drunk drivers and acting like driving incapacitated is just something that happens.

As someone who used to have a drinking problem who now doesn't drink at all, it'd be easy to say to me that it's easy for me to say that if you get busted once for drunk driving, and it happens again, then you should forfeit the right—the privilege—to drive.

I have almost no tolerance—not a pun—for drunk drivers, and I didn’t when I was a regular souser. I think if you drive drunk you're selfish, reckless, and though you might not be evil, you're doing something that fits the evil bill, or at least an inhuman one, because more than anything in this life, we are tasked with looking out for our fellow humans. Drunk driving is the vehicular antithesis of that.

The current news cycle drunk driving story, of course, is that ex-Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Henry Ruggs killed twenty-three-year-old Tina Tintor—and her dog—after driving intoxicated at the insane speed of 156 mph. Tintor and her animal were burned alive in the vehicle, with a witness describing her screams of agony.

Somehow, in this backwards world, people then take to Twitter and talk about intent, and how we all make mistakes, and that Ruggs needs love. He didn't do it on purpose, after all. In short, I see a bunch of people who probably do a lot of drunk driving, putting your life at risk, waving this away, "nothing to see here"-style.

To which I say, how many excuses have to be made for atrocities? I don't buy the entire "well, it was an accident" thing. If I take a gun, and there is one bullet it in, and I point it at you, and I fire, that's not a lot different to me, intent-wise. It's simply a difference in math. In percentages. But the decision is a similar one, conceptually, if you take the time to use that thing you have called a brain.

And this isn't a case of having three beers instead of two, and making the 35 mph drive home from the tavern that's 2.3 miles away from the house. What kind of monstrous child drives 156 mph?

Can you even imagine what it is like to burn alive? Ever step into the shower when the water is too hot? But the sympathy seems to be towards the perpetrator rather than the victim. That's because people are preemptively looking out for themselves. In case they do something fiendish. Or because they've done it and just not been caught or killed anyone. It's a way to normalize being bestial to your fellow human.

This person had her entire life in front of her. Where is the rage that that was ripped from her, rape-style, but worse than a rape? But he didn't mean to? You drink and once you drink you shed responsibility? If I drink a lot, it doesn't absolve me in the slightest if I go out to the fishing boat, grab the harpoon gun, and come back inside and shoot you with it through the eyeball. No one would say, "Well, he did have quite a few drams of the Lagavulin whisky that night."

But drunk driving? Sure, let's enable that thing that is far, far, far more likely to kill someone. You should get one warning. You do it again, you never drive again.

Let that be your life with all of the inconvenience that brings. It's still a hell of a lot more convenient than smelling your own flesh on fire as you burn to death.


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