They deceive us; they lie to us; they make promises they know they will never keep; and now, your friendly politicians want you to TRUST them … that taking away just a little part of your rights won’t erode your freedom.
They must be stopped … before you are.
The all-party parliamentary Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights in Ottawa has recommended Criminal Code be amended to allow police to “randomly” stop ANYONE in a car ANYWHERE and at ANYTIME … WITHOUT EVEN A HINT OF EVIDENCE …. just to check them out for possible drunk driving.
And the Tory government is reportedly so enthusiastic about it all that a Bill could be introduced within two weeks. (No wonder so many Canadians fear giving Harper and the Conservatives a majority! Who knows what other such gems might be up their sleeves.)
The argument is that in a couple of other countries where this has been done, drunk driving deaths and injures have dropped. But is this the only way to achieve that result?
Make no mistake about it … this new law would be an assault on YOUR civil rights.
Of course, we all want every single drinking driver off the streets, and to feel the full force of the law through the courts. Many would even support tougher penalties for offenders.
But do you really believe all police officers will use this new power without abusing it? I don’t!
Young people driving hot-looking cars, attractive looking women, hippy-looking types, blacks, Muslims, Sikhs … all kinds of others, including anyone recognizable or not, like retired old reporters who perhaps did a story (or blog) the cop hadn’t liked … could be vulnerable and in danger of being victimized, even repeatedly, just because of their “looks”. And not just asked if they had anything to drink? But also, where they are going? Where are they coming from? Without any evidence of anything being out of order!
At least now, in such cases, citizens have options … including legal recourse … when such arbitrary stops and checks are carried out without well-founded reason. Like the long-haired guy in West Vancouver who just recently won his case … and damages … for such discrimination.
Can you imagine what would happen if the Criminal Code was amended to give police total discretion to stop anyone driving: and all they have to say is they were just “suspicious” the driver could be drunk driving!
And what happens if, in the course of looking for drunk drivers, the police officer notices something else … like a bag of weed on the front seat? Would that charge stand up under our Charter of Rights and Freedoms?
Would police target people they just “suspect” for other things, using the drunk driving issue as an excuse? How could we ever know the difference?
And if you think that would be fine, because “if you have done nothing wrong, you shouldn’t have anything to fear” … you don’t understand the precious freedoms we have, how fragile they are and how easily they could be lost.
Giving police to stop ANYONE, ANYWHERE, WITHOUT ANY HINT OF EVIDENCE … just to “check them out” is going too far.
Let them step up Road Checks, where all drivers passing by are stopped and checked out; let them pull over more drivers displaying ANY symptom of being an offender: but RANDOM stops of anyone THEY select: NO.
This is not some dictatorship where citizens can be stopped and questionned …. or even shaken down … by police, without reason. Not yet!
And in this day and age, anyone who “trusts” politicians and police when they say they won’t abuse any new arbitrary power, should have their heads examined.