Notice that nothing in those three words necessitates driving while drunk. Notice that it’s not “Driving a Car While Using Illegal Drugs.” It does not say “Civilian Driving While Intoxicated.” In short, it doesn’t put anybody in the clear. It’s a fairly broad law that encompasses every reasonable definition of driving, every reasonable definition of intoxication, and every reasonable definition of driver. A police officer who is driving his tractor while intoxicated with prescription drugs is just as liable as a private citizen driving his Honda after having a few too many beers.

The best way to deal with DWI laws is to never drive while intoxicated. Of course, if you’ve already had one or two DWI arrests, then it’s a little too late for that. You can insist that your DWI was “different” because you were on a scooter and you had only had a few too many codine pills for your sprained foot, but legally, on job applications, on your criminal record, it’s not much different from driving a truck while high on illegal drugs.

Unfortunately, traffic school or a defensive driving course will not make your DWI disappear, but it’s a little green mark on your record, and after the black mark of a DWI charge, you need every little green mark you can get.

The bottom line on DWI arrests is this: anyone can be arrested and charged with a DWI, not just civilians, any and all forms of intoxication can get you hit with a DWI charge, and recovering from a DWI charge can take a lot of time and effort.