Bar stools across America rumbled a few weeks ago when the National Transportation Safety Board (N. T. S.A) recommended a .05 blood-alcohol content driving law– with the goal to reach a zero rule. So, should Oregon support the N T. S. A. ‘s .05 toward zero goal? No.
Under a .05 rule a 180 pound man would earn a free police car ride for just 3 drinks in an hour and a 140 pound woman, after only 2 drinks within an hour’s time. Enforcement of a .05 or lower rule would necessarily require enormous public funds and unnecessarily acquaint law other-wise abiding citizens with the criminal justice system. Unintended consequence of a .05 rule or lower will be the lessening legitimacy of drunk driving laws and a chilling effect on the restaurant industry as fewer people go out at all.
Don’t get me wrong. Stopping drunk driving is a noble and worthy goal. But an unsustainable law is not the way to get there. Perhaps that is one reason Mother’s Against Drunk Driving (M.A.A.D.) refused to jump on the N.T.S.B.’s bandwagon. As Abraham Lincoln astutely gleaned, ”The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly.” A .05 to zero rule would backfire and therefore not work effectively to reduce drunk driving traffic accidents.