In a recent commentary we proposed much stricter penalties for drunk driving, including making the penalty for killing someone in an accident when driving drunk a capital offense. Most of you agreed we need to toughen up the laws, but some of you objected to our trampling all over the Constitution, as well you should.
You can read the responses on our website, but here's a sampling: "So, you want to eliminate part of the Bill of Rights to solve the drunk-driving problem? I'm talking about 'no appeals'. You have much more confidence in police, their procedures and their equipment than I do," wrote one viewer.
Another said, "It's a shame we've become a nation of people that can't accept responsibility for our own actions. It must be someone's fault I break the law, they kept pouring me drinks, it was the video game violence that made me kill, it's McDonald's fault I can't leave french fries alone. It's refreshing to see someone actually BELIEVE it's OK to punish the person who did the crime."
Another viewer wrote, "I agree that the blame should rest completely on the individual. Any intelligent adult knows the risks of drinking and the second they get behind the wheel they are assuming responsibility for what might happen. It disturbs me when I hear stories of repeat DUI offenders still on the road and still not taking responsibility for their actions."
One unhappy viewer wrote, "What happened to innocent until proven guilty in a court of law!!!!!!! Your idea stinks as in 'unconstitutional'."
We don't claim to have all the answers. Our purpose with these commentaries is to raise awareness of issues, stimulate thought and dialogue and, hopefully, have people take responsibility for their actions.