wcknight - Actually, I think you have got it a bit wrong. (Or maybe I’m wrong and have been listening to Protestants too long). Apparently there is a bit in the bible which says we are actually supposed to obey our governments and the laws they make in all cases except where man made laws actually oppose the laws of God, or something like that. Laws about pet keeping and speed limits, as far as I know, don’t oppose God’s will or His laws hence it would be a sin to break those laws I think. Generally venial sin, but sin all the same.
DreadVandal - Saying “He could if He wanted to” doesn’t sound quite right. As the CCC says, there is nothing within God’s power than is not also within His love, His will and His intellect. Basically what God can’t do and what God doesn’t do, then, are the same thing. If it’s not a mortal sin then God doesn’t (hence can’t) damn you to hell for it.
Black Jaque - He was not trying to justify a sin, just making a distinction between mortal and venial sin. It’s incredibly scrupulous to think that driving 31 in a 30 zone could possibly constitue grave matter. Not to mention full knowledge - speedometers aren’t that accurate, so even if you think you’re going 31 you might not actually be breaking the law.
Driving dangerously is a pretty subjective thing, so I think that the way we work out if it’s grave or not is by its ends. If you deliberately drive 100 in a 55 zone, but don’t hurt anyone, well you might claim that it wasn’t dangerous because there was no one around (hence, makes it only a venial sin). But if you hit someone, then it would prove that you actually were driving dangerously, and the grave end would make it grave matter. And even though you didn’t mean to hit someone, you were speeding on purpose and should have known that it could hurt someone, hence satisfying full knowlegde, and making it a mortal sin.