With DUI's, Long Islanders Have Already Had a Rough Memorial Day Weekend

At the beginning of the month, Runnin' Scared mentioned that Nassau County police officers were getting a grant for the month of May to ramp up the amount of police officers on the lookout for drunk drivers. Looks like it came just in time for the holidays - what perfect timing.

Over the past two nights, at least seventy-one (count 'em, SEVENTY-ONE) people were arrested for drunk or drugged driving across Long Island, according to Newsday

Just look these statistics:

"Twenty-five people were arrested on DWI charges in Nassau County last night between 7 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. Sunday."

And here's a few more, provided by Gothamist

"In Nassau County, 39 people were arrested on DWI charges between 7 p.m. and 8 a.m. the next day on Friday-Saturday and Saturday-Sunday. Suffolk County saw 21 arrested for "DWI and driving-while-ability-impaired charges between 4 p.m. Friday and 5:30 p.m. Saturday" (the numbers for Saturday-Sunday aren't available yet)."

We know Long Islanders love drugs and booze but come on.

What's even scarier is that the total doesn't even include the other law enforcement municipalities; it is strictly the work of Nassau and Suffolk's main police departments, leaving out state and local squads as well as the sheriff's department.

If you have ever been to Long Island, you would know that there are dozens upon dozens of towns (Ronkonkoma, Hauppauge, Floral Park, Bethpage, Garden City - just to name a few) that make up these two counties. And many of them have their own police forces. 

So, seventy-one could be a huge underestimate, which is an extremely scary thought, especially since we still have another night left.

A few years back, the police departments started a "Wall of Shame" initiative. The idea is simple: you mess up on the road, your face goes online where everyone can see it. Talk about the humiliation of social justice. 

Well, that project ended in October because of privacy reasons - an obvious conclusion for something called the "Wall of Shame." So, now, we guess the only weapon the Long Island police can wield against drunk driving is to show up in sheer number.

Unfortunately, that doesn't seem to be stopping anyone.



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Staten Island Bob
Staten Island Bob

What can we say at this late date about the DUI crusade, (which has been going on for 30 years now.) The handwriting is not only on the wall, it is ingrained in our consciousness. When I was young bar-hopping was a popular thing. Now, many of those establishments are no longer there, (and to tell you the truth, we are better off for it). But that is something every one of us has to find out for ourselves; either the easy way, (by a personal epiphany), or the hard way, (by the cops).  Unfortunately the suburban communities don't have viable mass transit in the evening hours, so drinkers still lean toward driving.

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