CONTACT 'How deep must we sink?' - Dr. Christian Thurstone

Ed Wood is an expert on issues related to drugged driving — which is chief among the reasons Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper appointed him to serve on a task force charged with recommending regulations of marijuana to the state’s legislature.

How and why Mr. Wood developed his expertise — and his relentless pursuit of legal reform surrounding impaired-driving laws — is tragic: His own son, Brian, was killed at age 33 in 2010 by a marijuana-impaired driver. Brian braked and swerved in a way that saved the life of his wife, Erin, who was pregnant with their first child. The book Mr. Wood published in 2011, Deception Pass, recounts the tragedy and the legal realities that followed.

Mr. Wood works honorably and diligently in his son’s memory with the hope of ensuring others won’t have to experience the heartbreak he and his family have — and do. He has launched the Driving Under the Influence of Drugs (DUID) Victim Network, which promotes effective per se laws to define DUID. As the organization’s website notes:

“A drug per se law defines drug impairment by laboratory tests alone. All states define alcohol DUI per se by laboratory tests showing blood alcohol level greater than 0.08 gm/dl for adults, and greater than zero (or 0.02 gm/dl) for minors. Laboratory tests are routinely performed for all suspected alcohol DUI cases.

“Only 17 states define DUID per se by objective laboratory tests. In other states, more difficult, costly and subjective means must be used to prove DUID. Laboratory tests are not routinely performed for all suspected drug DUI cases.”

This week, Mr. Wood sent a message to the full governor-appointed task force in anticipation of the body’s last meeting, scheduled for today, Feb. 28. His comments speak loudly about the task force’s focus and composition — both heavily weighted in favor of the marijuana industry and its interests.

“Please, on your last day, spend no more time talking about how much THC should be permitted in gummy bears, lollipops and candy bars. I was disgusted to listen to adult leaders in Colorado talking about this Monday afternoon, with no apparent concern with the debasement of our culture that occurs as we make mind-altering drugs more attractive to our children.

“How deep must we sink before we resurrect ourselves?”

About Christine Tatum

Christine Tatum is a veteran journalist whose communications and market intel firm, Media Salad, Inc., helps companies and nonprofit organizations win business and stay ahead of their competitors. Her professional stops include the Chicago Tribune, The Denver Post, the (Arlington Heights, Ill.) Daily Herald and the (Greensboro, N.C.) News & Record. Her work also has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, and New York Times.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share this post with your friends!