April 25, 2004

Drinking and driving

The Kiwis' perennial obsession with the demon drink needs a rest:
Gordon McLauchlan again rightly objects to the resurgence of wowserism in our Con-ruled town, now with a raft of new areas that you can't take your drink to for a social drink - or an uncivilised boozing session, if you so wish.
You've got to ask whether prohibition can work, even for young people.
If you want to up the drinking age to 21 again, shouldn't only 18 to 21 year olds be asked, since it only affects them?
If booze drinking and driving by the young is the problem, why not introduce "drinking licences", which you can have if you do not have a "driving licence" at the same time. You should be able to swap them when necessary - any ATM machine could be configured to issue the licences (and no swapping back again within, say, 24 hours, and if you are caught carrying both of them you lose both for 12 months). And it should not only be limited to the young drinkers/drivers either since most drink driving is done by the middle aged.

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