Sunday, October 10, 2010

Drunk Driving

St. Louis Cardinals broadcaster Dan McLaughlin was arrested in August on suspicion of drunken driving.  Other drivers called 911 to report an "erratic driver."  An officer responded and pulled over the local celebrity, who refused a breathalyzer.  (Booking photo courtesy of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.)

This story wasn't immediately of special interest to me, other than my obvious concern about drunk drivers on the same roads I travel.  Where it got interesting was in the discussion following the article, where respondants seemed split between certainty that McLaughlin would get a special treatment/a slap on the wrist and confusion over what he really did wrong.

These comments are representative of the latter point of view:
  1. He was drunk, so what, he didnt kill a puppy, DUI's are a revenue stream plain and simple.
  2. Looked like he had a good time. I agree, how can something be a crime without a victim?
    Checkpoints amount to an illegal search.
  3. Drunk driving is not a crime. In order to have a crime, you have to have a victim. Who is the victim in this case? I thought so. Oh, so you want to start criminalizing POTENTIAL crimes? God help us all.
  4. Anyone who drinks has probably driven home when they shouldn't have, so I would not claim otherwise. I don't know this guy or his drinking habits and I don't think most of these people do either. Could it be he was out with friends and went over his limit by one or two?
  5. Could've happened to anyone after a glass or two of wine in this spread-out town . . . 

Every now and then I'm confronted with evidence that others see the world very differently than I do . . .

9 comments:

Jennifer said...

Insane! I like Whoopy Goldberg's philosophy! You get caught driving drunk, they take your car! One of my biggest pet peeves are drunk drivers! Knowing that there are drunk drivers on the road that could destroy my family at any given moment on the road scares the heck outta me!

Sarahlynn said...

And it's even scarier to me that some people don't think it's a big deal! Not just, "I don't think I'm drunk; I can handle the car," but "So what if he was drunk? Until he kills someone there's no crime." Horrifying.

I was an adult before I realized that people still drive drunk. I thought it was an anachronism. In high school and college all the kids I knew who drank were *militant* about monitoring drunk driving, usually taking keys before serving the first drink. Then I got a job working at a country club, and had a rude awakening.

Keri said...

Girl, stop reading the comment section! No good can come of it.

Sarahlynn said...

True! And yet it seems I can't look away.

Emom said...

WOW! my sweetie's first wife was killed by a drunk driver.....I guess that wasn't part of their thinking....so sorry...

selzach said...

It's scary that so many people think it's OK to drive drunk.

Several years ago, Hubby and I ended up behind a drunk driver. Hubby was (obviously) off duty and didn't want to chase the guy in case he tried to run and hit someone, so he called for an on-duty officer while we followed the guy. Hubby finally stopped the guy as he pulled into his driveway. The driver could barely stand while holding onto his truck. He was a firefighter and wanted Hubby to use "professional courtesy" to get out of being charged. You'd think a first responder, of all people, would realize the danger of drunk driving. Nope.

Sarahlynn said...

Sadly, he probably feels like he "got screwed" and that your husband was a big jerk, that he was "unlucky" to get caught by an off duty cop rather than the truth: that as a drunk driver he was utterly reckless and deserving of consequence.

Carmel said...

sickening! I feel like people deem this part of their "freedom." blech.

Sarahlynn said...

I think you're exactly right, and that reminds me of a bumper sticker I keep meaning to blog about . . .