The Moral Panic About Drunk Driving Victimizes the Innocent

by 1389 on January 21, 2012

in 1389 (blog admin), Bible, Canada, culture wars, Shari'a, USA

Margaret MacDonald is nearly 83 years old and suffers from lung damage (as do I). Standing outside in the cold at night could have killed her. Though she could not muster enough lung power to activate a breathalyzer, her blood alcohol level proved to be zero.

Unless we all want to capitulate to shari’a law, it’s time to put a stop to the moral panic about alcohol in Canada and the US.

Ezra Levant on Canada neo-Prohibitionist fascists

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Uploaded by on Jan 12, 2012

To bully and berate an innocent senior then punish her without a trial for a crime she clearly didn’t commit.

This, apparently, is what Alberta has to look forward to under draconian drunk-driving laws inspired by our neighbouring province, where suspected motorists are guilty until they prove themselves innocent.

Fortunately for 82-year-old Margaret MacDonald, tears brought on by allegedly obnoxious B.C. RCMP officers didn’t blind her to protecting herself.

“I came into the house and burst into tears — then I stood here at three o’clock in the morning and thought ‘my word means nothing,’” said MacDonald.

“Three officers don’t believe me, so I phoned the hospital and took a taxi over to have a blood test.

“I’m not going to let the Mounties get away with saying I was drunk.”

At the Cranbrook Hospital, she obtained a laboratory document proving what she’d desperately been trying to tell police a few minutes before.

There was no alcohol in her system — not a drop — and yet MacDonald’s failure to provide a proper breath sample meant her car was taken away for a month and her licence suspended for 90 days.

Now, $6,000 out-of-pocket and in fear of losing her home, the Cranbrook senior will wait another six months for a ruling on her case, as the B.C. government tweaks legislation to comply with a court order.

It was May 21 when MacDonald was approached by an off-duty RCMP officer, just outside her home.

MacDonald, a near-teetotaler, was returning from an engagement party at a friend’s house when she mistakenly turned into the wrong lane. She assumed that’s why the police officer was there.

Even when the off-duty cop told MacDonald a breathalyzer was coming to test her for drinking and driving, she didn’t worry — her last serious drink was 60 years ago: “I really don’t drink,” she said.

What she didn’t count on was the lung power needed to properly blow into a police breathalyzer. Having suffered from serious pneumonia a few years ago, she couldn’t manage.

That didn’t stop RCMP from making her try — over the next two hours, MacDonald says she was forced to stand in the chill and told to blow 15 times by increasingly snotty RCMP officers.

“He pounded on the hood of his car and shouted at me to blow. He shoved this thing in my mouth and it fell on the ground, and he picked it up and put in back in again,” said MacDonald.

“I said ‘I don’t drink, I haven’t been drinking,’ and he said, ‘you’re sticking your tongue in there because you don’t want do this — you’re slurring, you’re drunk and you stink of alcohol.’”

RCMP officials are now reviewing the conduct of officers that night, but try as they might, the Mounties couldn’t get a sample from the shivering, teary-eyed senior, who was wearing only sandals and a thin dress.

Thus, MacDonald was cited for failing to provide a breath sample, given a Notice of Driving Prohibition for three months, fined $500 and told her car was to be towed.

MacDonald wept, but she was sharp enough to obtain proof of her innocence, because in Canada that used to be enough to make those in power see sense.

Not anymore. Under a system about to be adopted in Alberta, drivers suspected of driving drunk, even under .05%, can lose their licences and cars without a trial.

Even after MacDonald took her blood test to the RCMP station, she was told nothing could be done.

A helpful corporal on duty provided her with a letter, stating: “I believe it is only fair that this Driving Prohibition and Vehicle Impound be terminated and removed from your driving record as soon as possible.”

But it didn’t end there.

Despite proof of alcohol-free blood, B.C.’s superintendent of motor vehicles adjudicator still found her guilty — a decision now under review by direct order of B.C. Solicitor General Shirley Bond.

“Obviously, I am concerned with this circumstance but it is important that we get all the facts of the case,” Bond said in a statement to QMI Agency.

“As soon as I became aware of this, I directed the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles to review the case and that work is currently underway.”

The ordeal took a massive toll on MacDonald — a few days later, she suffered what doctors in Calgary told her was a mild, stress-related heart attack, leaving her bed-ridden in hospital.

Back in Cranbrook, all she can do is wait.

“I’m nearly 83 and you have to cope with life, but through my years I’ve never been this traumatized over anything,” she said.

“Especially when I’m totally innocent.”

- Calgary Sun

Piss off, MADD, you pathetic prohibitionists

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Uploaded by SDAMatt2a on Jan 18, 2012

In Ontario the legal BAC limit is 0.08 per cent, but the blithering idiots at MADD have seen to it that your car can be impounded if you blow at the * legal * limit of 0.05. The cop has been made judge and jury. Your papers, please.

And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man’s heart. – Psalm 104:15, KJV


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 grego January 21, 2012 at 1:43 pm

The trouble with ‘government’ and ‘police’ is that they see these tickets with fines attached to them as further income above and beyond the tax base. Thats why they make it so hard to have any charges dropped. Police, and the “mounted” police are told that these fines income is what pays their wages. So they are VERY COMPELLED to write as many tickets as possible- justified or unjustified. Its a bad system.

2 1389 January 21, 2012 at 10:37 pm

@grego,
It’s the same in the US also. Small towns incorporate themselves and then get the idea that they can collect more revenue by hiring traffic police and having them write tickets. Problem is, it ends up costing the town more money than it brings in, when all is said and done, and it creates a system of tyranny.

I live in an unincorporated area, where the policing is done by the county sheriff and his deputies, and by state police. All local policing should be under the management of elected county sheriffs who must face the voters at regular intervals (IMO, it should be one year at a time). If the sheriff is doing a poor job, is corrupt, or is tyrannical, the voters can fire him. The salaries for sheriffs and their deputies, and for state police, should NOT depend on fines, nor should there be any quotas for tickets or fines.

3 g March 18, 2012 at 7:58 pm

Yes i have been charged with failing to blow not because i was guilty but because I wasnt even in the drivers seat driving at the time. their were four others in the vehicle and one of them was the driver and the arresting police officer failed to inform the superintedant of these facts so the superintedant thinks we are all liers and takes his word against 3 other affidavids that were sworn. Not only that that arresting police officer has been charged with stealing and aasult and has now been fired from the force as this is just new evidence to all . Now if anyone wants to make a complaint against this detachment as for hennessey (Bryden) He no longer works as a RCMP employee then your complaint is no good! What do you thick about this? Maybe there are more peolpe out there that are not commimg forward? I would like to no if you were involved in this kind of miscarriage of justice! Crimminal conduct in this case. He has now been charged with stealing laptops to assault charges and there may be more . If anyone has had any thing happen to them in their lifetime reguarding this former police officer you may email directly to wrehab@hotmail.com. This is a desgrace of the provincial govt and to the bc RCMP dept.

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