Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) is manipulating the results of the new University of Maryland traffic survey to call for ignition interlocks for all convicted drunk drivers (“Drunken driving down in Maryland, study says,” Sept. 14). The fact is, the majority of Marylanders actually don’t support requiring the in-car breathalyzers for all offenders.
Less than half of Marylanders believe that interlocks are a good punishment for first-time offenders. The overwhelming majority (86 percent) support requiring the devices for repeat drunk drivers. Because the vast majority of alcohol-impaired fatalities are caused by drivers with high-BACs (blood alcohol concentration) and repeat-offenders, requiring interlocks for that hardcore of alcohol abusers is the appropriate use of the technology.
That’s why 27 states have passed high-BAC and repeat-offender interlock laws, while just 11 target low-BAC, first-time offenders. The Maryland legislature would be wise to do the same. As usual, MADD is going too far.