Checkpoints only further police state

Freedom New Mexico

Benjamin Franklin either originated or borrowed these words: “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

Franklin wasn’t talking specifically about sobriety checkpoints, but his words apply.

New Mexico Department of Public Safety is conducting a “100 Days and Nights of Summer Sobriety Checkpoint” program that runs through Sept. 8.

A news release reports state police will conduct 230 sobriety checkpoints, saturation patrols and other special traffic safety operations targeting drunken drivers across New Mexico.

Clovis police are conducting similar operations.

We know many local residents support the checkpoints because they “have nothing to hide” or because they’ve been told the inconvenience helps rid the highways of drunken drivers.

We support efforts to keep drunken drivers off the roads, but sobriety checkpoints don’t accomplish that goal. As libertarian Web logger Kent McManigal reminds us, they are a sign of a growing police state’s foot in the door of this country, which we believe Franklin would point out if he were alive today.

If there are statistics proving — even suggesting — that