Don’t Ban DUI Checkpoint Apps!

0 Dont Ban DUI Checkpoint Apps!Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) wants to control your smartphone.

Yesterday, Schumer went after Google, Apple, and other smartphone-industry players who have refused to follow a “voluntary” request by him and Sens. Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), and Tom Udall (D-N.M.) that they ban apps that show where police are setting up driving under the influence (DUI) checkpoints, speed traps, and the like.

State officials are applying similar pressure (and are also claiming that all requests for compliance are “voluntary”). Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, the son of Vice President Joe Biden, is pushing for bans and so is Maryland’s Attorney General Doug Gansler, who likened the apps to “giving a robber the key and the alarm pad code to go rob a bank.”

As a direct result of the pressure, Research in Motion, maker of Blackberry products, blocked the apps.

But are apps that give citizens more information about what law enforcement is up to a bad thing? They clearly fall under First Amendment guarantees of free expression (that’s why lawmakers are saying their requests are “voluntary”). But perhaps more important, such apps actually minimize drunk driving and speeding – which is one of the reasons why police in places such as Travis County, Texas, are the ones entering the information for DUI checkpoint apps such as Trapster. As a Travis County cop puts it, if he can stop the problematic behavior without writing tickets or hauling people in, everybody is better off.

That’s an irony that’s lost on bullying pols such as Schumer, Biden, and others. But it’s one of the reasons why the audience for such apps continues to grow.

Approximately 3.27 minutes. Featuring Cato Institute policy analyst Julian Sanchez and President of the Association for Competitive Technology Jonathan Zuck.

For links and more info, go to

Produced by Joshua Swain with Nick Gillespie, who also narrates. Filmed by Swain and Jim Epstein.

Duration : 0:3:27

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25 Responses to “Don’t Ban DUI Checkpoint Apps!”

  • omgawesome says:

    Thank you. I just …
    Thank you. I just downloaded trapster

  • harrybean2006 says:

    The end of liberty …
    The end of liberty begins when we surrender our right to move about freely,

  • brutalbeastzach says:

    we will just make …
    we will just make another one if it gets banned…

  • fbiagent0007 says:

    chucky schumer
    chucky schumer

  • oTANSTAAFLo says:

    I don’t care where …
    I don’t care where DUI checkpoints are. If I end up being illegally stopped by the police I’ll just refuse to cooperate with any infringement on my rights. If I ever get arrested for doing nothing I will fight for my rights using every means available to me. They can feel free to start the fight and I’ll feel free to finish it.

  • theaaroneason says:

    @malcolmxray Israel …
    @malcolmxray Israel, perhaps?

  • malcolmxray says:

    @rayjay99 Actually, …
    @rayjay99 Actually, it’s Virginia that banned radar detectors.

  • malcolmxray says:

    @jrswam O’Malley …
    @jrswam O’Malley and Gansler are the douchiest of douchebags. It sickens me that we in the state of Maryland are governed by them and their statist ilk.

  • malcolmxray says:

    @IJUSTLOVETURTLES Sobriety checkpoints are inefficient. And we need intelligent security screening at airports, not the security theater that we have now.

  • malcolmxray says:

    Is there anything …
    Is there anything that Chuck Schumer doesn’t want to control?

  • yougiberishtube says:


  • EuphrasieF says:



    I want the roads to be safe too, that’s why I want traffic cops to focus on people who are visibly driving dangerously, rather than setting up checkpoints that all drivers in a particular area have to go through. I think being random and unpredictable about when and where they monitor would be preferable.


    @EuphrasieF ( …
    @EuphrasieF (continued) Although it’s worth noting that “the vast majority of drivers aren’t drinking, so eliminate all checkpoints” isn’t a valid argument. The vast majority of airplane passengers aren’t terrorists, that doesn’t mean that we need to eliminate security screening at airports just because some people think it’s a hassle.


    @EuphrasieF That’s …
    @EuphrasieF That’s a good point. I wasn’t thinking of the fourth amendment, I just want roads to be safe for everyone to drive on.

  • mic09dcsm09 says:

    This is insane. …
    This is insane. Corporate responsibility MY ASS.

  • goingalt says:

    What is a corporate …
    What is a corporate responsibility? Last time I checked their only responsibility was to make money (which is not a bad as some people think).

  • deathofisrael says:

    I cant stand nazi …
    I cant stand nazi style checkpoints ! Stopped at checkpoints in california since 71 . The police state has been here for a while now … Very telling what they think of you the citizen to even say these words !

  • Mauhadeeb28 says:

    @faithnotneeded …
    @faithnotneeded Have ou ever seen what happens in cities that remove speed limits and do away with street lights/stop signs? Look it up. There are thousands of cities in the US and mhundreds of thousands throughout the world that don’t utilize stop signs or speed limits. Of course you could make the argument that it would never work in a major city, but there is no evidence to say otherwise. In fact, there are studies that tie speed limits and traffic lights to increases in deadly accidents.

  • lordthawkeye says:

    @faithnotneeded …
    @faithnotneeded Actually evidence suggests otherwise. Some places in the world tried removing speed limits and it did not result in more accidents. Turns out, most people only drive at a speed they feel comfortable with. Most of us aren’t crazy kamikaze maniacs and those of us who are don’t listen to speed limits anyway.

  • RogueSwordThesco says:

    Doesn’t matter, …
    Doesn’t matter, there’s nothing “legally” they can do about it

  • faithnotneeded says:

    @Mauhadeeb28 I …
    @Mauhadeeb28 I never said that, but you seem to be implying that speed limits are unethical or immoral. I’m not sure where you’re from, but I drive in Atlanta traffic everyday, and I can tell you right now that if there weren’t speed limits no one would ever get anywhere due to the number of wrecks because there are so many horrible drivers.
    Checkpoints I can do without though

  • REWHBLCAIN says:

    We have money for …
    We have money for this but yet we have no money to enforce illegal immigration and sealing the border.

  • neisy2362 says:

    @sadieblooming LOL, …
    @sadieblooming LOL, GOOD IDEA

  • neisy2362 says:

    @faithnotneeded …
    @faithnotneeded EXACTLY!! And if a cop were around, then no doubt he would be able to detect a lawbreaker endangering other drivers and NO NEED FOR A CHECKPOINT!!

  • glennd7962 says:

    I’m going to lose …
    I’m going to lose it soon. What’s the next move? Arresting folks for flashing their lights to warn about speed traps?

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