Almost every day you can read online about a pedestrian somewhere being hit by a car. Today’s offering is an eight year old boy. The police are not releasing information yet, the driver was neither arrested nor ticketed so, I’m willing to bet that the boy didn’t stop, look and listen.
The “pedestrian has the right of way” law is costing lives as more and more people are being stupefied into blindly walking into moving traffic. I was walking with a friend and as we approached the curb she neither stopped nor looked. She just stepped off of the curb and I grabbed her as cars from both directions were giving no indication of stopping.
If you watch people coming out of grocery stores or places such as WalMart, most of those people are not looking either. They just walk out with blind faith that the world will stop for them. The law does force drivers to be more cognizant of pedestrians since all the blame will be on the driver and their insurance company but it is also making pedestrians oblivious to the danger of 4,000 pounds of steel coming at them at thirty or fifty miles per hour. Regardless of the law, my money is on the 4,000 pounds of steel.
Just because the pedestrian has the right of way does not mean that the driver is not eating fast food, putting on makeup, on the phone, fiddling with the radio, setting the GPS or nodding off. We can make laws against those (Schumer, get on it) or we can give pedestrians a foolproof way to not get hit by cars: Stop, Look and Listen. It works every time. Go to your local highway and try it.
Maybe we should take all the politicians who voted for that law to a busy highway and see which method they choose to cross the street. Our eight year old little boy didn’t get that choice because he somehow learned that cars will always stop for him. Always.
When I was a kid there was a deluge of commercials on TV on the topic of Stop, Look and Listen. Yielding to a car will keep you alive 100% of the time. Stepping in front of one, not so much. I think I’d rather be alive than to brainwashed into thinking I have super human powers to stop traffic.
Maybe if politicians created harsher punishments for drivers who hit human lemmings – yes, that will save lives – But, really, we don’t need more laws, we need one less law. Rescind the pedestrian right of way law. If we have to keep it so we can place the blame, at least couple it with the admonishment to stop, look and listen, too.