Should police be allowed to draw the blood of drivers suspected of drunk driving?
Next time you get pulled over by a cop — or stopped at random in
a “sobriety checkpoint” — you might want to remember the
following laugh line: It’s called the Fifth Amendment to the Bill
of Rights, which reads, in part, that “No person… shall be
compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against
Ho ho ho!
It’s a laugh line, because, like, so many of the other amendments to the Bill of Rights, pleading the Fifth — that is, declining to assist the authorities in your own prosecution — is a sick joke.
Or like them, is about to become one.
Because cops may soon have the legal authority to forcibly extract blood from you in order to use that blood as evidence against you in DWI cases — which are criminal proceedings.
Refuse to take a Breathalyzer (for whatever reason) or perform the trained monkey act by the side of the road (perhaps because you’re not coordinated even if completely sober and probably a lot less so under pressure and in the glow of a policeman’s flashlight) and you could find yourself thrown down across the hood of a squad car while some cop jams your body with needles in order to get the blood that will then be used as evidence against you at your trail.
Oh, but they will be trained!
Well, sort of, kinda. A “compressed” version of the same program taken by blood techs — phlebotomists, in medical jargon — will be the curriculum vitae of these state-sanctioned thugs.
Feel better now?
It’s all part of a new federal program — yes, another one — the stated purpose of which will be to determine how effective a “tool” such tactics would be in the ongoing (and endless) crusade against drunk driving. If it is deemed “effective” (do you doubt it will be?), then it will become as commonly practiced across this formerly free land as all the other outrages against civility and basic legal due process we have already assented to.
The badge-lickers out there will see no trouble here, either. After all, if you’re not driving drunk, what have you got to be worried about? Those nice cops would never use force against an innocent person! They will be trained! The lab people don’t make mistakes, not even every now and then.
And, of course — drunk driving is a bad thing!
It makes me shiver with dread to see just how close to the abyss we really are. The Masses — or a great part of them — have become sickeningly compliant authority worshippers of the late-Soviet or 1920s Weimar Germany type who submit to anything demanded of them by the state. And who often bristle with righteous indignation when the occasional semi-sentient citizen dares to raise an objection. Such a person is either a soft-headed “liberal” (if the objector is a badge-licking “law and order” Republican type) or (if the objector is the liberal), the person raising pesky questions is smeared as being opposed to “safety” - or someone who favors (in this case) “drunk driving.”
Neither sees — or would give a damn about it, if they did — the point. Which is that empowering cops to physically hold you down and draw blood from your body against your will — to be used as evidence against you in a criminal proceeding — is to rape the Fifth Amendment and thus, another basic and ancient tenet of the late great tradition we used to call the rule of law.
All in a good cause?
Only if you’re a fool — or the government, which knows what the real payoff here is.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?
H/T to National Review Online