Saturday, January 12, 2008

keep your eyes on the road, your hands upon the wheel, again

Virginia's state legislature is considering banning people from driving and text-messaging at the same time.

This falls into the category of, Do People Really Need to Be Told Not to Do Something This Frigging Stupid? Unfortunately, the answer is obviously Yes, because people DO text-message while operating large pieces of machinery moving at high speeds.

DWT (driving while text-messaging) is incredibly dangerous. Not just because it pulls your eyes off of the road and over to the cell phone, although that's obviously extremely dangerous. But also because it distracts you from the task at hand, which SHOULD be getting from point A to point B without killing yourself or anybody else.

Virginian legislators have also tried and failed to pass a ban on driving while talking on a cellphone. Please try again - DWC (driving while cellphonetalking) is a very bad thing to do. Other states have passed laws banning this. In fact, I'd like to see the federal government require such statutes if states want to keep highway funds coming in.

States ban drunk driving, not out of any prudery against tippling but out of recognition that driving while drunk endangers the driver, his passengers, people in other cars, pedestrians, and even people sitting in their living room on the street side of their house. Again, researchers have found that DWT and DWC is even MORE dangerous than DWI.

Virginia and other states, please keep up the effort to ban this behavior. And you out there, SHUT UP AND DRIVE. Let that terribly important text message about the new tennis racket you just bought wait for a few minutes. And if you simply MUST use any device other than the steering wheel, brakes, and gas pedal, then PULL THE HELL OVER.

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