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Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Guns and breathalysers

The Virginia General Assembly has passed a bill permitting concealed weapons in restaurants. This 'corrects' an earlier law that had allowed only openly carried weapons.

If signed by the Governor, the law will prohibit "those who pack guns from drinking [alcoholic beverages]" in establishments serving alcohol. There are no bars, per se, in Virginia. Establishments which are allowed to serve alcohol must also serve food prepared on-site.

This begs some questions. If a weapon were concealed, how would the bartender know this? Would he/she be complicit in violating the provision?

"ID, please. Up against the wall, and spread 'em!" [The story here.]

Maryland is considering car ignition interlock devices for first-time offenders of alcohol violations. A breathalyser would prevent a car from starting if any alcohol were present in the breath of the driver. Presumably non-entertainment purposes might interfere with the ignition, such as, for example, mouthwash. The bill catches with a wide net: intoxication has not been, and cannot be, demonstrated to be the same as having one standard drink. [The story here.]

Here's a modest proposal.

If there were more public transportation, wouldn't there be less driving? If there were more sidewalks, wouldn't more residents be able to walk safely? If state and local governments would relax suburban zoning laws, might not there be more neighborhood pubs to which adults could walk ... rather than drive?

Let a thousand pubs bloom!

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