“Drivers who get behind the wheel while high on drugs will face roadside testing and they could be ordered to surrender urine, blood or saliva samples at the police station under a controversial new law that takes effect July 2nd. Drivers who refuse to comply will be subject to a minimum $1,000 fine…
“…The new law, however, has sparked warnings about potential court battles from critics who contend that demanding bodily fluids is overly intrusive and scientifically unreliable in detecting drug impairment.”
BCCLA Submission on Bill C-16 (Roadside Drug Testing) – These clear and extensive arguments were presented to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights on June 10, 2005 by the B.C. Civil Liberties Association. The bill became law in late 2005 and obviously the majority in parliament didn’t read it and didn’t care about liberty, due process and privacy rights.
The Canadian Bar Association raised serious objections to the law also. But what do they know, right? So Members of Parliament didn’t read it – they were too busy destroying our liberties and listening to ignoramuses.
Arbitrary detention and forced testing – it’s all going to be a lot of fun. Thanks Canadian parliament! Why didn’t anyone think of implementing mandatory blood and urine testing before? Were they “too hung up on rights and liberties”? It takes a bunch of geniuses to be so creative. Notice how their war for “freedom” in Afghanistan doesn’t prevent the government from destroying liberties at home. That’s creative. True innovators. None of this “rights” stuff for them.
Notice how they had “five years of intense debate” in the federal parliament over this. Yes, it’s “overly intrusive”. Period. It’s a violation. The person is being compelled to have their body personally invaded without due process, for something they may or may not have in their bloodstream rather than based on any evidence of harm to another person. This is the fundamental issue. Victimless so-called “crimes”.
Those drivers who do real harm should be the ones given the attention – that’s the principle of personal responsibility. Instead, the government and our society is escalating attention to personal habits. What about legal and prescription drugs? What about falling asleep behind the wheel or other distractions? If someone’s driving badly, sure, stop and give them a ticket, take them off the road if necessary. I don’t agree with testing for alchohol either – observation is enough – if somebody has been hurt, make the person pay.
Invading the person’s body IS a punishment in advance of a proper trial. I think driving offences and road behavior should be managed by separate security, without dragging the police into it unless real harm is done by the driver. But our society is going in the opposite direction. Why? Perhaps because it is convenient to focus on easy compliant targets – stripping them of their rights and freedoms – instead of focusing on real justice reforms and truly irresponsible drivers.
The DUI frenzy was the thin end of the wedge and this is what it led to – the ultimate invasion of personal privacy. And now, in addition to the fine, Canadians are more vulnerable to having all the new offences that governments have introduced dumped on them at a roadside stop if they don’t cooperate.
July 16th, 2008