Not many people would disagree with the sentiment that driving a car while under the influence of alcohol is a good idea.
It’s selfish and poses a great risk to other drivers, among a million other reasons why people shouldn’t do it. That said, something about MADD has always gotten on my nerves- perhaps it’s the near thirty minutes I spent detained at a routine alcohol checkpoint Thanksgiving Eve last year, delayed on my late-night journey along with over a dozen other vehicles, all of us interrupted because hey, people drink the night before Thanksgiving. In addition to the dozens of cops and cruisers costing the county God knows what, a big police trailer and several floodlights, each driver was subject to an additional stop at the end of the checkpoint to receive a packet reminding us not to drive drunk and a sticker, courtesy of MADD. State sanctioned proselytizing by private groups seems a bit busybody-ish.
None of these opinions are meant to minimize the fact that drunk driving is a terrible crime, to be sure, and people of all walks of life are arrested for it. Like Debra Oberlin, 48, the former president of a former MADD chapter in Gainesville, Florida. Oberlin didn’t have a change of heart- the chapter ran out of dough back in the 90s and fizzled out. Or maybe she did- it was reported that Oberlin’s BAC was measured at .234 and .239 on Breathalyzer tests, well, well above the legal limit in Florida of .08.
Oberlin, who was a MADD president for four years, told the officer she’d consumed four beers prior to her February 18th arrest. She declined comment on the incident.