Reply To: Libertarian perspective on legalizing all drugs and DUI laws.


I agree with Rusty that the argument for legalizing drugs should address the already existing legality of alcohol but comparing the two does not alone lead to the conclusion that therefore drugs should be legal. It is an impasse, If one then the other, but, which one? It also does not follow from that that driving under the influence of drugs should be illegal.

Some clarity can be found where Rusty states that a private road owner can set the terms of use of his property. But, to the extent that the state is similar to private owner in this capacity, it already does just that. As a private owner may prohibit intoxicated drivers from using his road so too does the state. The case for making drugs legal does not preclude the state or a private owner from prohibiting drivers under the influence of drugs from usage.

I do agree with Rusty that drugs should be legal and that owners can set the terms for usage of their property. I don’t think he has properly understood or addressed the argument presented by Sheyboer.

If a person agrees with laws that make driving under the influence illegal because inebriated drivers might hurt others, then that person should also support laws against hard drugs because they may cause users to become violent and hurt others.

Following this argument the “person who agrees” should also support laws against alcohol in general. Whether or not he does does not invalidate the argument. The logic of the argument does, however, lead to absurdity. People who are angry might hurt others. Should we support laws making it illegal to be angry? There is little that wouldn’t be something that might hurt others, perhaps, such laws themselves might fit that criterion.

It is not my contention that the state, in its capacity as road owner, cannot set rules for use of its roads, including prohibition of inebriated motorists. Rather, the state should not go beyond its capacity as road owner and make drunk driving illegal. If this seems like a distinction without a distinction consider that the state already has usage prohibitions on drunk driving and charges penalties for readmittance, this comports with the rights of a private owner. Currently, the state goes beyond these rights in making drunk driving in and of itself a criminal act. Drunk driving for its own sake is not a harm to anyone or anything. If a harm does occur it is not a given that the drunk driving was the culprit. Any “accident” involves some kind of negligence and it is why we seek to find who caused the “accident” not who caused you to drink.

If you think drunk driving should be illegal because a drunk driver might harm someone else then you should think drugs should be illegal because a drug user might harm someone else. Me, I think it should be illegal to harm someone else, not possibly, actually.