Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Cracking down on sober driving

Under 18? Smoked pot in the past 30 days? A new bill in the Illinois state legislature would deny you access to a drivers license, just for having THC metabolites in your system.

Good thing our good friend Pete Guither was interviewed by the press so he could inject some common sense into the debate. (FYI: Pete is the author of the quintessential drug policy blog Drug WarRant and faculty advisor of SSDP's kick-ass chapter at Illinois State).
"I think it is ridiculous, silly, inappropriate and ineffective. Here's the issue. Really what you need to be dealing with when it comes to driving is impaired driving. Drug testing at the time of permit or license has absolutely nothing to do with that. What it does is simply go out of its way to target young people who have used marijuana, regardless if it has anything to do with their driving," Guither said.

"The drug test would probably be very specifically targeted at marijuana because its metabolites can stay in the system for days, so that is what can be tested. It would be silly to say, 'We're going to test people that have had a drink of wine two days ago. That is a reason for them not to be drivers.'"


According to Guither, every study done has shown that alcohol is the more dangerous factor when it comes to road safety.

"It is not even a close consideration with marijuana, which is somewhat in the same area as cell phone usage and being tired," he said. "It's really just a way for Congress to act tough. It is just not constitutionally a good idea."
Great work, Pete!


Jonathan Perri said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jonathan Perri said...

I wonder what parent's reactions are to this? It is such an incredible invasion of privacy and basic rights. Why should anyone have to pee in a cup just to be able to recieve a permit/license? Maybe we could find some upset parents.