Reason Writers Around Town: Matt Welch on Politicizing Nick Adenhart's Death

For his debut "Blood Diamond" column over at the new website True/Slant, Reason Editor in Chief Matt Welch writes that Mothers Against Drunk Driving is using the opportunity of the Angels pitcher's tragic death to push through a questionable ignition interlock law that almost certainly would not have prevented it. People who think sports tragedies make for good criminal law, Welch argues, need look only at the case of Len Bias.

Read all about it here.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • English Fail||

    That's not what "begs the question" means.

  • Matt Welch||

    I put that there to make sure Hit & Run regulars were reading closely.

  • ||

    Tangentially related: HrBunny told me a ski-helmet law was being debated in response to Qui-Gon Jinn's wife dying.

    Oh Canada indeed.

  • ||

    FrBunny, if it had been enacted after the loss of elder statesman Sonny Bono, this tragedy could have been avoided.

  • Matt Welch Makes Me Sleepy||

    What a relaxing piece of writing.

  • ||

    How true. Of course, outlawing falling would also do the trick.

  • ||

    @brotherben, not that meanie MWMMS.

  • ||

    People suffering from diabetes or hypoglycemia produce significant amounts of a compound called acetone. Acetone is sometimes identified as ethyl alcohol by breath analyzers, so someone with diabetes or hypoglycemia can appear legally drunk to a breath analyzer [ref].



    Link

    Fuck you MADD. Fuck you to death.

  • ||

    Speaking of crazy, militant, dumbasses, I saw a story over the weekend that PETA was pressuring the Pet Shop Boys to change their name to something less cruel.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Speaking of crazy, militant, dumbasses, I saw a story over the weekend that PETA was pressuring the Pet Shop Boys to change their name to something less cruel.

    !!! please link!!!

  • Kyle Jordan||

    "Speaking of crazy, militant, dumbasses, I saw a story over the weekend that PETA was pressuring the Pet Shop Boys to change their name to something less cruel."

    Are you fucking serious...?

    Please, tell me you're joking.

    And SugarFree, use it to your advantage! You can actually be drunk while driving but just say that you're diabetic! Of course if you puke on the cops shoes and then claim to have fucked his wife before passing out it kind of screws up the plan.

  • ||

    Art,

    Link

  • ||

    SugarFree,

    I don't understand; that link went right to an appropriate article.

    It's like Wile E Coyote just caught the Roadrunner.

  • ||

    Kyle,

    You bethca. I don't drive drunk, but it's nice to know I have the option.

  • ||

    I don't understand; that link went right to an appropriate article.

    I've got a garbage bag of STFU under the desk, you know.

  • Josh||

    So how soon before MADD gets wind of the name of Reason's blog, and starts launching into a tirade? Or have the good folks at Reason already gotten e-mails on the "insensitivity" of the name?

  • Kyle Jordan||

    "Rescue Shelter Boys"

    My head hurts now...

    And "Sea Kittens"?! Holy shit are these people a different kind of stupid.

  • Kyle Jordan||

    Well to be fair, not all hit and runs are done by drunk drivers.

    I remember getting so much shit in high school for wearing a "DDAMM" t-shirt. DDAMM standing for Drunk Drivers Against Mad Mothers. It was awesome.

  • ||

    I've got a garbage bag of STFU under the desk

    Does it get in Epi's way?

  • ||

    FrBunny,

    He's in it. Duh.

  • ||

    It's been said before, but it bears repeating. PETA is awesome at shameless self-promotion.

  • ||

    Nude, Pregnant PETA Protesters Target Jamie Oliver

    Money quote from Oliver:

    "It's a slightly odd place for them to be protesting but nonetheless they are welcome to do that. My main concern was that they would get cold."

  • ||

    outlawing falling would also do the trick.

    I read that as "outlawing failing" the first time by, which is what our Congressional Nannytarians have been trying (with zero effect) to do for decades.

    Failure is *always an option*.

  • ||

    Failing is already outlawed in schools.

    "Everybody is special, Dash."

  • ||

    Mothers Against Drunk Driving. That's how they roll - using high-profile tragedies to help push anti-drunk driving legislation through the political process.

    Minor quibble: I think they have progressed from "anti-drunk-driving" to "anti-drinking".

    Anybody who, while driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, kills another person should be tried for murder. However, if somebody who has been drinking is pulled over while driving in a controlled and appropriate manner (for a faulty taillight, for example), I do not believe that person should be treated as a murderer who has miraculously been apprehended in the act of pulling the trigger.

    And, as most people already know, words on paper (i.e., laws) are not magic spells.

    A guy who is willing to get shitfaced and drive around town after his license has been taken away for doing that very thing is probably not going to worry too much about finer points of law, like installing an ignition interlock.

  • Just Saying||

    I can't imagine anyone thinking of circumventing the ignition lock by having his passenger or his child start the car for him. But just in case, there will have to be a law against it.
    "Illegally starting a car" or something.

  • ||

    FrBunny, if it had been enacted after the loss of elder statesman Sonny Bono, this tragedy could have been avoided.

    I'm not sure that passing a Sonny Bono-Michael Kennedy Ski Helmet Act in the U.S. would have prevented Natasha Richardson from dying in Canada.

    But if Richardson had gone skiing in the U.S. and hit a tree, even in the absence of such a law, she'd have had a better chance of surviving than she did in Canada, since our wastefully expensive health care system is so profligate with the availability of CT scan equipment and medevac helicopters.

  • Uncle Rahm||

    A crisis is a terrible thing to waste...

  • jihnl||

    As long as we are going to play politics wit hthis, Nick would be on the DL and heading back this summer if the car had bounced off the van and hit dirt or another car. Instead they were thrown into a light pole. We need to stop putting lighpoles, trees, and other overly strong things right next to the road.

  • ||

    Approximation of an exchange I had with the MADD freaks.

    Scenario: My sister is driving, her boyfriend is in the front seat. I'm in the back seat. We're coming home from a ballgame. We run into a roadblock. Each car is stopped by a cop standing at the side of the road. Next to him is a housewife. We roll down the window. "Have you been drinking?" "No, officer." Housewife leans forward to give her elevator-pitch for MADD. My sister: "I understand what you do, can I go now?" Housewife turns to cop, clearly displeased with my sister's inability to play nice with normative road blocks. Cop: "Helen here gave up her evening to help us prevent accidents and raise awareness." My sister: "Terrific, if we're not being detained, can we go now?"

    Cop and "Helen" were mortified by my sister's unwillingness to be awed by their intrusiveness, but the cop waved us onward because he -- unlike Radley Balko's tedious rotten apples -- knew he had precisely no reason to detain us further.

    I remember when MADD was seen as something that prevented bad things from happening. Now, when I hear their acronym, I think of evangelicals, nosy desperate housewives, conservative PACS, drug wars, and other wastes of sensible people's time.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Video Game Nation: How gaming is making America freer – and more fun.
  • Matt Welch: How the left turned against free speech.
  • Nothing Left to Cut? Congress can’t live within their means.
  • And much more.

SUBSCRIBE

advertisement