Should all Cars Require a Clean Breathalyzer Test Prior to Start

People have been driving drunk since the invention of the car. They have been leaving death and destruction in their wake ever since. Society has determined that we can no longer accept drunk driving and we have been increasing the penalties for it in recent years. 30 years ago a group called Mothers Against Drunk Driving decided that they were needed to help control drunk driving.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) has been behind the drive to increase sentencing for those who drive drunk and have been advancing education in that area. Now MADD has decided that it is necessary to have breath alcohol ignition interlock devices installed on all new vehicles. This would indeed stop anyone from driving drunk because the car just won’t start if there is alcohol on your breath.

Most people have no objection to convicted drunk drivers having to have a breath alcohol ignition interlock devices installed in their vehicles especially if the drunk pays or it himself. That is as it should be. If you have been convicted of driving while impaired, after you serve a jail sentence or pay whatever fine has been levied, then they should have to install one of those devices. It is hard to argue against that. But can a similar argument be made for installing those devices on all new cars?

Installing breath alcohol ignition interlock devices on all vehicles suggests that we are all guilty of driving drunk therefore we all need to breath into the machine. Many, many people have never driven after they have tasted alcohol.  MADD would then suggest that we are all guilty of driving while impaired and so we all must have a breath alcohol ignition interlock devices installed on all vehicles because we are presumed guilty and there is no chance to prove your innocence.

Certainly everyone is in favor of reducing the number of drunks on the road but at what cost? It is indeed both fair and right to ensure that everyone convicted of impaired driving have the breath alcohol ignition interlock devices installed on their vehicles. Of that there is no issue but that is after the person has been found guilty of the crime of impaired driving.

The rest of us are innocent of any such crime and should never be lumped in with those criminals. Certainly MADD is trying to reduce drunk driving and while that is noble, it is also misguided when you wish to throw the rest of society in with the criminals.

Having an ignition interlock on any vehicle is by no means foolproof. A drunk could still easily drive by having a friend or another person blow into the machine for him. Ignition interlock bypassed and pretty much useless at that point. The rest of us however would still have to blow into the machine regardless of whether we even drink alcohol or not and many of us do not drink but would still be punished.