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Government mandated drug testing … slippery slope in West Virginia

One of the problems I have with government-mandated testing for those receiving government assistance is simple. If that’s appropriate, where does it end? In West Virginia, a delegation is suggesting kids must pass a series of three drug tests before getting a drivers license.

From CBS 13 in West Virginia, with my emphasis in bold.

A bill introduced on Tuesday in the West Virginia House of Delegates could require the 16-year-old to take a drug test before he ever gets behind the wheel. …

Del. Joe Ellington (R-Mercer) introduced the potential measure. He said it would forbid the DMV from granting permits and full licenses to minors unless they’ve passed a series of drug tests.

“We’re trying to keep them from bowing down to peer pressure to use drugs,” Del. Ellington said. “If they’re really motivated to get their driver’s license, they won’t start it to begin with.”

Since we certainly want to avoid problems with drugs in the United States, why not propose the following?

  • A series of drug tests for every student – at random – multiple times per year. We don’t like drugs in school. Fail a test, the kid gets kicked out, are banned from seeing their old friends, and the parents must pay for private tutoring.
  • Driving under the influence of drugs is bad and kills innocent people every day … random drug testing multiple times per year for every driver. Take the cars away from the drug users.
  • Parents should not do drugs around kids. Any parent with a child younger than 18 years old needs mandatory, random drug tests. Their kids should be taken away if the parent or parents are doing drugs.
  • Drug abuse costs American society billions and billions of health care dollars each year, this cost is too much to bear. Drug testing is cheap, and by requiring random drug testing we can save billions … and many lives.

That should just about cover it… but did I just define a police state?

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34 Responses to "Government mandated drug testing … slippery slope in West Virginia"

  1. ricbee says:

    Del. Ellington is another wistful thinker,who thinks laws can mandate goodness.

  2. SeeingRed says:

    Hmmm, maybe we should also implement (to save lives of course):
    *every man, woman in child in the US of A shall wear a bicycle helmet from sun-up to sun-down.
    That would cut down on nasty scalp lascerations (which have been known to cause death in laboaratory tests) that happen daily from tripping while decending a staircase, falling off of a bike and stepping on a banana peel.

  3. JBS says:

    Gee, Wally, while we are at it, why don’t we throw in a test for being ugly and overweight?
     
    A lot of adults, especially older people, drive while stoned on their prescribed medications. “Stop for what school bus, Ossifer?”

  4. Dimsdale says:

    Police state?  I think you just defined the liberal’s idea of utopia: the ultimate nanny state.  Not so different from a police state, is it?
     
    Calling Mayor Bloomberg……

  5. stinkfoot says:

    Has the ACLU made itself heard here?

  6. sammy22 says:

    Drug testing is rather common in the workplace already, often as a prerequisite for employment. What is so out-of-line here?

    • stinkfoot says:

      The question is where does it end… today, it’s government assistance, tomorrow it will be a condition of receiving unemployment compensation, next week it will be required to receive a driver’s license- it’s an effective requirement to prove ones innocence without probable cause as mandated by the government and not a prerequisite of employment in the private sector by a business that must assume the liability of whatever happens on its premises.

      • ricbee says:

        The”War on Drugs”has become the campaign to deny us all our rights. It must be ended before  our rights are completely gone.

      • stinkfoot says:

        @ricbee
        To me the so-called war on drugs, by the manner in which it is pursued, has shown itself to be less about actually dealing with a public health issue than what the government- over numerous administrations- would have us believe.  As to the issue of the erosion of rights, singling out any group- whether it be young licensees, welfare recipients, or other segment of society to be subjected to what amounts to a warrantless search without probable cause as a condition for getting a license, collecting benefits, or whatever else, is wrong and everyone who values their own freedoms should stand up against it regardless of their political leanings.

      • ricbee says:

        If we quit the War on Drugs we rake away all their pretext.

    • You’re a lost soul if you don’t see the difference. Government vs. private sector. There is a HUGE difference.

    • JBS says:

      Can you say, U-N-I-O-N-S, sammy22?
      As in, say, public-sector unions?

    • Dimsdale says:

      Maybe the politicians should apply these rules to themselves and not us.

  7. JBS says:

    Drug testing for those receiving government assistance. Is it appropriate? That’s vague. Who does that mean? SNAP receipts? Meals-on-wheels? SSI? Retirees on SS? Many people are prescribed one or more drugs that would test positive. Then, there’s false positives. So, where would it end?
    With another huge, intrusive government bureaucracy is where it would end. The Democrats and many Republicans would love that! But, I don’t see that as happening; most Democrats and — yes, sammy22 — many Republicans want to see entitlements grow. They have a vested interest in staying employed (and in power), so, they want to continue “bringing home the bacon.”
    Driving is a privilege; drug testing as a condition of licensing does make sense. Who really wants a drug-addled new driver, with limited experience and poor judgement skills, driving a car, truck or worse, an SUV?!

  8. PatRiot says:

    Required initial and random tests for Government officials:  Drugs, common sense, logic, budget balancing, ethics, morality, lie detection, Constitutional competency and respect of sovereignty at the individual, local, state, national and international levels.

  9. sammy22 says:

    I don’t believe I am such a lost soul, Steve. I suppose you may have heard of programs such “Fitness for Duty” programs and requirements. And as far as W.V. one may want to take a look at http://www.dhhr.wv.gov/bhhf/resources/Documents/WV%202012%20Behavioral%20Health%20Profile.pdf
    and any number of relevant articles about drugs and driving fatalities.
    Some things are HUGE only in the eyes of the beholder.
     
     

    • Just say you want a police state … since what you are suggesting is just that. I live in the United States of America where we accept a certain level of risk so we may live in a free state. The government taking steps to reduce risk for the good of the country limits my freedom. Where do you propose we stop? That study does not limit it’s scope to teenagers, it looks at everyone. Therefore what you are suggesting is mandated drug testing multiple times per year for EVERYONE. Hell no thank you. I don’t care if it saves a few lives, I really don’t, because I accept a certain level of risk to live free. I don’t want to see people die in accidents, but the logical conclusion to this is crap legislation like banning backyard swimming pools and 5 gallon buckets since people drown in pools and kids drown in buckets.

    • Dimsdale says:

      Nothing is “huge” until it affects you.  This constant erosion of personal rights, liberty if you will, to provide a little (if any) safety is the slippery slope.  Case in point, the proposed legislation to fine people smoking in their cars with children.  A hideous practice to be sure, but what happens with the kids at home?  When will some pol get it into his/her head to do random inspections there?
       
      Incrementalism is the slippery slope.

  10. sammy22 says:

    You not need put words in my mouth. I pointed out that drug testing is already a requirement in some industries and is (OMG) government mandated, e.g. drug testing for nuclear power plant operators.
    Even JBS had the temerity to state:” Driving is a privilege; drug testing as a condition of licensing does make sense. Who really wants a drug-addled new driver, with limited experience and poor judgement skills, driving a car, truck or worse, an SUV?!”
    Sorry to read that your freedoms seem to be continually “reduced” even when they are not.
     

    • JBS says:

      You just want to argue. And, once again, it is in the later stages of a post. The topic is: proposed government-mandated drug-testing, specifically, for teen drivers.
      Driving is a privilege. It is not a Right, it is not a requirement, it is not necessary. Do you see, do you understand the difference?
      As such, exactly what is your opinion on the types of proposed testing presented here? Existing drug-testing schemes are not in question here.
      (It may be necessary to read the post, not just the comments)
       

    • He just wants to change the topic to something else because he finds no fault in the position defined in the actual post. He’s doing this frequently, I’m calling him out on what his comments imply, and then he complains I’m putting words in his mouth.

       

      He’s also completely ignoring the bullet points in my post that list the obvious next steps.

      • JBS says:

        Liberal thought process is torturous . . .
        Your progression of ideas resounds with me. Driving a vehicle entails calculated risks. Everything done to preclude impaired drivers is paramount. Impaired teen drivers (and new drivers) compound their lack of skill, judgement and sheer driving experience when operating a vehicle while drugged– including alcohol.
        I particularly like the first bullet point. Personally, I favor letting 14-year-olds quit school; readmit them at 16-years-old, if . . . That is a stupid move on the part of the kid, I know. Yet, every teacher knows of multiple, know-it-all, disruptive — druggie? — teens who make it miserable for others.

  11. JollyRoger says:

    I want zero-tolerance, mandatory drug testing for all politicians!  We need our pols to lead the straight and narrow path from ahead rather than, like Obama, from behind!

    • Lynn says:

      Yes, Jolly Roger, Me too.

    • Dimsdale says:

      Why stop there?  How about competence tests before they write or vote on legislation?  Clearly, there is a complete lack of “commonsense” (just wanted to use a liberal “power” word!) economics being displayed from the president down, particularly among the liberals.

  12. Plainvillian says:

    Three exit questions:  1.  What is the biggest (and illegal) cash crop in West Virginia?  2.  When enough things become illegal, how can anyone not be a criminal?  3.  If one is already a criminal, why obey any law?
     
     

  13. sammy22 says:

    I don’t get it. I agree w/ drug testing. The bullets above gave it the label of  a “police state”. Which side are you defending? And none of us (presumably)  lives in West Virginia. Should they not be able to enact the legislation that “fits” West Virginia?

    • stinkfoot says:

      I must then infer that you do not agree with “innocent until proven guilty” because I see government mandated drug testing as being akin to proving ones innocence of a crime that one hasn’t been charged with- in the case of the post as a contingency of receiving an entitlement.

    • If you’re fine with teenage drug testing to get a drivers license, you’re fine with ALL adults getting mandatory government drug tests for life to keep their license. That can be defined as a police state in my mind. Where does it stop? Funny how everyone understands what I’m getting at but you.

  14. Lynn says:

    I see another possible problem. When we start to test for illegal substances, will we start testing for other prescription drugs? Adderol is routinely given to children with ADHD and it is now known to become addictive. By the time kids reach age 18 they have gone from 20 mg to 60 mg. and they want more and more. It  is one of the hottest drugs kids sell to make money. When enough people finally figure  this out, will they start testing for that and then what? HYPPA laws will just become laughable with all this increased testing.

  15. sammy22 says:

    It boggles the mind (at least mine) how you got from drug testing for minors in W.V. to me being ” fine with ALL adults getting mandatory government drug tests for life to keep their license”.

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