And the reason for ruining this man’s life is…?

An Oregon man is arrested for doing something probably every teenage boy has done at some time or other: blowing up dry ice in plastic bottles. The charges include five counts of unlawful possession of a destructive device, five counts of unlawful manufacture of a destructive device and four counts of disorderly conduct.

These are the kinds of charges that could put him away for life. And for what? Having a little fun and hurting nobody. Where is the societal benefit to expending public resources, including taxpayer dollars and the court system’s limited time, to destroy this man’s life?

Sadly, this is just the inevitable result of well-meaning but over-broad laws, a police force that’s distrustful of the citizens it’s charged to protect, and overzealous prosecutors who’ve forgotten the importance of intent in criminal justice.

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