Exclusive Adina Kutnicki: Why Is Drunk Driving Treated More Leniently Than Assault With A Deadly Weapon?
Posted on 11/9/2012 by admin
By Adina Kutnicki
Though not often viewed as a Jewish problem, drunk driving should be recognized for what it is – a deadly concern to all, even within the Jewish community. And whether we admit it or not, the Jewish community has more than its share of alcoholics, and by extrapolation, drunk drivers too. Therefore, they have a stake in this deadly issue.
Thus, common sense dictates, a mega ton weapon is as deadly – if not more so – than any weapon of choice. As such, it behooves exploring the discrepancies of legal treatment, between those who drive drunk (irrespective of the actual physical damage), and others who attempt to inflict harm with another weapon of choice.
Regardless of the outcome of their crimes, and whether or not people die as a result, the fact of the matter is that drunk drivers are treated less like criminals (which they are) than their counterparts, chiefly by dint of their weapon at hand. The song and dance tends to go…the poor, tragic, misguided drunken fools.
Oh really? Who are these bleeding hearts kidding? Certainly not the wounded or dead, nor the families left behind.
As a result of these misguided fools, drunk drivers are often given slaps on the wrist, and at times sent home to sleep it off.Occasionally, they spend a night in the drunk tank, or must endure the ‘inconvenience’ of a weekend in a jail cell. That ought to do the trick. Hardly.
Most egregiously, their pithy ‘punishment’ is, at times, the temporary revocation of driving privileges (never mind that there is no inherent Constitutional – or other qualifying – right to drive…one must earn it), albeit for a defined time limit. However, a person charged with intent to do bodily harm with a weapon, is rightfully met with the force of the law. Say what?
Doesn’t the above notion of so called punishment, for driving a tonnage of metal while fully crocked, veer off into crazy-land, thereby, eliciting a mockery of ‘justice’? Yes, it does. But tragically, it is the way many western countries deal with an alcoholic’s addiction – as a pity fest. Oh me…oh my.
Shoring up the above, according to Expertlaw.com and other legal-based sites, the following fault-lines are very revealing:
‘What Are The Penalties For Drunk Driving?’
“The punishments vary significantly from state to state. All drunk driving offenses carry potential jail sentences. However, most first offenders are given lesser punishments, such as driver’s license restrictions, fines, mandatory attendance of drunk driver’s education classes, mandatory attendance of “Alcoholics Anonymous” meetings or alcohol counseling, community service, or probation. Please note that some jurisdictions sentence all drunk drivers to jail, although the term may be very short (e.g., one weekend) for a first offender. Sometimes, a drunk driver will be required to install an “ignition interlock” device on his car, requiring him to pass a “breath test” in order to start the ignition. Some states will immobilize or impound the drunk driver’s car. Some drunk drivers also have a breath testing device installed in their homes, and have to submit to random tests on that device when called by their probation officers. Some states have forfeiture statutes, which may allow them to take away your car as the result of a drunk driving conviction. Some states will impose higher sentences on people who, for example, are driving drunk while transporting children, whose blood alcohol content is exceptionally high, or who were driving in a particularly reckless or dangerous manner while impaired…..”.
On the other hand, assault with a deadly weapon is treated thusly, according to Damianslaw.com :
‘Assault with a Weapon Laws’
“Assault with a deadly weapon is an aggravated assault in which a person controlling a deadly weapon intimidates another person with serious bodily injury or even death. An assault with a deadly weapon is a felony offense despite of the actual injuries or harm…”(emphasis added).
Assault with Deadly Weapon Penalties
“There is a rather large range of possible penalties that the court can consider in assault with a deadly weapon charges. These penalties are often contingent on the actual severe bodily harm that were inflicted or may have been inflicted on the person during the offense. Previous records of assault or violent crimes are also taken into account.”
Why should any of this matter? In a nutshell, society is ill served when those who have demonstrated a propensity to inflict bodily harm on others (for whatever reason), and even ultimately death, are coddled by the system. Besides, whose interests does it serve? Certainly not those in the path of a careening, mega tonnage of metal.
Moreover, would heroin, crack or duly addicted folks be allowed to get away with driving under the influence of their drug of choice, almost as if its effects were nothing more than too much partying? Doubtful. But when it comes to the drunk driver, all reasoning is rendered two sheets to the wind. Why is there such a discrepancy between one and the other? Aren’t the effects potentially the same?
Besides, the wreckage in the alcoholic’s wake travels a wide swathe, with the end point in between twisted metal, as innocents are mowed down, but only due to their decision – to get behind a wheel drunk! This op-ed writer/blogger evidenced said underpinnings, in a featured article at The Jewish Press. And its target audience is the Jewish community, regardless of locale. .
Pity for the drunk driver – always an alcoholic – comes at the expense of those who are either their actual victims, or potential ones, as they leave incalculable human destruction in their path. Thereby, justice (for the victims) is always denied.
Time to stiffen the penalties. And those who continue to mete out said miscarriages of ‘justice’ should either be forced to buck up, or be stripped of their societal obligations to render verdicts!
I am an independent op-ed contributor to various Zionist and Conservative media outlets, including American Thinker, Israel National News, The Jewish Press, Israel Insider, Freeman Center For Strategic Studies, MidEast Outpost & elsewhere. I also contributed to an in-depth investigative series at FrontPage Magazine (from 2003-2007) with Lee Kaplan, tracking the ISM & its offshoots. My blog can be found at – www.adinakutnicki.com