The drug war business sector is confronting its own obsolescence as cannabis legalization continues to sweep the nation.
Companies selling urinalysis kits are feeling the pinch-off as people recover their rights to privacy while being given a greater range of medicinal choices involving their own bodies. Reactionary responses from Big Pharma and drug war industries can always be expected and often take the form of new tech products that promise an end to the alleged weed menace once and for all.
Topping the wish list is the marijuana breathalyzer. This elusive tech-creature has been the major choice for testosterone-crazed motor cops whose very job existence may depend on how many potheads they bust in a single weekend. Its market introduction is not going well. There exists no clear standard for judging levels of impairment from marijuana. The possibility of creating such a device, one that can be interrelated and quantified with an actual marijuana dysfunction, is doubtful.
Undeterred, the Biden Administration introduced a bill in Congress that provides $10 million toward equipping all new automobiles—starting in 2026—with breathalyzers that must be used to start the car. Yes, it’s true. The US government wants you to give your car a blowjob. Buy your new car now before it’s too late.
Bypassing the device is far more certain than making it work. A counter-tech gadget that blows clean moist air into the breathalyzer might work. Someone could give the random kid on the street ten dollars to blow into the mouthpiece instead of the driver. A handheld breathalyzer could be used to filter a person’s breath before it’s exhaled into the car’s breathalyzer. More research is needed. Breathalyzer hacking will ultimately rule.
A far better use for the taxpayers’ ten million would be to fund preliminary research into how marijuana use might mitigate certain anxiety-driven social problems, such as child abuse by parents, or by public school teachers and administrators—or situations like road rage, wife beatings, poverty, suicides, and homicides. Under our current Congressional dystopia, serious matters such as these may need to wait their turn for law enforcement to fulfill its dream of a drug-free society.