Marijuana DUI vs Alcohol DUI

The law states clearly that anyone driving under the influence with an alcohol level greater than .08 is considered driving under the influence and therefore not only breaking the law but endangering themselves and the lives of others. Recently there has been discussion about how and if a Marijuana DUI should be issued to those found “driving under the influence of marijuana”. The heat of the discussion was how would someone know when it was safe to drive after consuming marijuana and where would the line be when it was considered dangerous and a DUI citation would be justified.

 

We all know that with alcohol consumption there is impaired judgment and our reaction time along with motor skills are drastically effected by consuming too much alcohol. Currently there are methods In which an authoritative figure can determine whether an individual is too intoxicated to be driving by performing certain sobriety test which can be conducted on the spot. Those who fail simple benchmarks of sobriety not to mention breath test are usually convicted or plead guilty. However when it comes to the issue of driving under the influence of marijuana it is hard to determine what is considered “over the limit” and “unsafe” do to the fact that the opposite tends to be true when it comes to marijuana, drivers under the influence of THC tend to have heightened awareness, rather than diminishing sensitivity as they do after drinking.

 

So the issue is whether authorities should have the right to issue DUI citations for marijuana and if so, how would they know when the THC in someone’s blood exceeds the legal amount. I think this is wrong on many levels. The fact of the matter is in many cases marijuana does the exact opposite of what alcohol does to a driver, it “heightens” their senses and therefore are much more alert and cautious when they are driving where as alcohol even if you tried very hard to be cautious you are still at risk of causing yourself harm or harm to others. I feel that as far as DUI’s go it should be strictly enforced and aimed at the drunk drivers whom cause hundreds of accidents a year and not at the medical marijuana patients whom are just taking their medication.

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