Green Room

Hot new idea in Ireland: Legalizing drunk driving in rural areas

posted at 2:28 pm on January 23, 2013 by

Someone on Twitter posted this yesterday with the obvious joke: “Or, as the Irish call it, ‘driving.’” The rationale for the policy is interesting, though. It’s not about mainstreaming drunkenness, it’s about removing a deterrent to socializing for otherwise isolated farm-dwellers. If they can’t raise a pint together, they’ll raise a pint alone. Or build a meth lab in the barn. Either way, bad outcome.

What could go wrong?

He said his proposal would bring back a social outlet for lonely people in rural areas that had been lost after stricter drink-drive laws were introduced.

Healy-Rae, who owns a pub in Kilgarvan, County Kerry, said it would benefit people who are “looking at four walls”, and could help prevent mental illness.

“They’re travelling in very minor roads, often on tractors, with very little traffic and it’s not right they’re being treated the same as the rest of the travelling public and they have never killed anyone.

“The only outlet they have then is to take home a bottle of whiskey and they’re falling into depression, and suicide for some of them is the sad way out,” he added.

Shouldn’t reclusive city-dwelling beta males also be eligible for permits like this? Ahem.

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