Saturday, February 13, 2010

You're a Jackass! You Need to Be Punished

The movement to ban cell phone use while driving goes federal. Meet Obama's Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood. It's all about ending "distracted driving," through "awareness" and, of course, new laws to punish the distracted.

Andrew Ferguson has the story.
So what do we know about the safety of using cell phones in cars? Aside from the intuitive understanding that we all share—that anyone who can’t wait till he’s done driving to talk on his cell phone is a jackass—we don’t know a lot for certain. The number of fatal crashes “involving distraction” has increased in the last four years; but the overall number of such crashes has declined. Nationwide, car crashes have fallen dramatically while the use of cell phones has jumped dramatically (from 195 billion minutes in June 2000 to 1.1 trillion in June 2008). Last month the Highway Loss Data Institute issued a report comparing collision rates for states before and after they passed bans on drivers using handheld cell phones. The bans showed no effect on the number, frequency, or severity of collisions.
And wouldn't you rather be a jackass, than a meddling, liberty-curtailing, sanctimonious scold? LaHood wouldn't. Neither would Karl (see below). But wouldn't you?


Blogger Don said...

Common Sense

On three different occasions in Media in the last two months, I entered the pedestrian crossing at lights, only to have cars almost hit me. In all three cases, the drivers were on cell phones or texting, and in all three cases, they saw me at the last minute and jammed on their brakes (obviously you say). All three times, I was crossing on green, and all three times the drivers were coming from the opposite direction. You would think that even drivers ignorant enough to use their phone or text, would at least be smart enough to know that certain maneuvers require a driver's full attention. apparently, that is not the case. It is really sad that the government has to pass laws enforcing "common sense," but that is where we have evolved.
In all three of my experiences, I stopped in the crosswalk, jumped up and down and screamed, "PAY ATTENTION" at the top of my lungs, almost scaring the ignorant drivers to death. Unfortunately, one of these days they won't look up, and it will be up to my decedents to scream.


February 13, 2010 at 6:20 PM 

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