Lew Rockwell slams
the criminal State for criminalizing non-crimes.
What precisely is being criminalized? Not bad driving. Not destruction of property. Not the taking of human life or reckless endangerment. The
crime is having the wrong substance in your blood. Yet it is possible, in fact, to have this substance in your blood, even while driving, and not
commit anything like what has been traditionally called a crime.
What have we done by permitting government to criminalize the content of our blood instead of actions themselves? We have given it power to make the
application of the law arbitrary, capricious, and contingent on the judgment of cops and cop technicians. Indeed, without the government’s
“Breathalyzer,” there is no way to tell for sure if we are breaking the law.
There is no other crime more damaging to the middle class than that of drunk driving.
The costs incurred for a single DUI are enormous, no matter if you hurt someone by your actions or not. This 2006
places the total cost of a DUI around 10,000 to 50,000 dollars. That is an
enormous amount of money for someone making 50,000 dollars a year to cover. It may take half a decade or more for the average person to recoup the
places the number of annual DUIs in the US around 1,396,888. If we assume an
average cost of 15,000 per DUI, that would mean the public is forking over 20,953,320,000 dollars a year to lawyers, insurance companies and the
Is the public made more safe? Obviously the law does next to nothing to deter drunk driving. Just like drug laws and gun laws, DUI laws are another
form of “pre-crime.” They are laws that attempt to prevent actual crime (hurting someone) from occurring.
Punishing someone that hasn’t hurt anyone or damaged anyone else’s property by their actions is wrong.
The State does far more damage to the public through the outlawing of literally harmless actions than it prevents in potential damages and lives lost.
We must consider that the money taken from a DUI offender may have been used to purchase medication, healthcare, or any other number of life saving
or extending goods or services.
When calculating how effective DUI laws actually are, one must consider ONLY THE MARGINAL DECREASE in drunk driving that occurs by having the law in
place – this number is relatively small. Most people who drive drunk think they
are OK to drive, thus the law itself does nothing to deter them from driving at the time they make the decision to get behind the wheel.
The public must be treated as adults and be given the adult responsibility to decide on their own if they are capable of driving without hurting
themselves or anyone else. The State should not play the role of the nanny looter.