The inquisitors of the Spanish Inquisition generally began their interrogations with a single question: “Do you know why we’ve summoned you here today?”
The goal behind such questions was to get the hapless subject to admit to heresy or blasphemy.
Nothing has changed since the 1300s
Today it has become customary for troopers who pull over drivers to begin their questioning with the question, “Do you know why I stopped you today?”
The purpose–as always–is to get drivers to incriminate themselves. The officers hope to obtain a response that they can use against the driver in the event the driver challenges the ticket in court.
Here is an amazing story (and video) of New Jersey cops ARRESTING a driver for refusing to answer the question, “Do you know why I pulled you over?”
The driver happened to be a lawyer. She is now suing the New Jersey officers for violating her civil rights. See here.