Big sister’s DUI checkpoints go too far

First they made you take your shoes off at the airport.

Then a dog sniffed your car before you got on a ferry.

Then you had a camera take a picture of your car as you skedaddled through a yellow-turning-red traffic light.

Now, you likely will have to stop at a checkpoint to let police look you over.

According to proposed legislation being floated by Gov. Chris Gregoire, police soon will be authorized to put up roadblocks to look for drunken drivers.

Whatever happened to civil liberties?

Let’s just imagine how this could go down.

You stop at a road block. A police officer shines a flashlight in your eye.

You look suspicious (maybe it’s the long hair or the turban). Or maybe they have to find people who don’t. They want to know where you are going tonight, or where you have been. They ask you to step out of your vehicle. Then you have to walk the line.

You miss a step. Then it’s the breathalyzer for you. Maybe they’ll take a blood sample.

OK, maybe I’m taking this too far.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for making us safer. But at what point do we give up too many of our rights? I’ll take a little risk if it means keeping my freedom.

I’m torn, though, because I do want to get drunken drivers off the road and I don’t want people blowing up airplanes.

It seems to me that there are better ways to do it than to terrorize ourselves.

I’d rather we apply some of the brain power that we use to build cell phones that can practically fly us to the moon to build a gadget that would prevent anyone who’s drunk from driving.

I’m not talking about breathing into a tube that any drunk can make his kid breathe into. We have the ability to easily design something to make a car inoperable when someone is drunk.

Making something like that happen, now that’s leadership.

Maybe we could take the millions of dollars that cities are making off of red light runners to pay for this. That would be a good use of that profit center.

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