Well its the New Year, and with the new year comes many wonderful things: mostly new beginnings, and next week, a new President. However with the New Year also comes one of the more dreaded aspects: new laws are taking effect all over the country. I just want to take a minute to express my displeasure with one in particular. I am currently in Los Angeles,California: home of palm trees and blond bitches. (According to Ice Cube, Lol). But as I stated in a previous blog, California is also the testing place for some of our more wacky laws that spread across the country. The newest is a law banning text messaging while driving. This encompasses Reading, composing, and sending text messages. The state of California rushed this particular law through very quickly. See, in 2006, the California legislature passed a law making it illegal to talk on your cell phone in any manner that was less than hands free. The law may have been passed in 2006, but it was not to take effect until July 1st, 2008. I guess upon its arrival over the summer, there must have been an increase in the number of individuals caught text messaging, because, as I remember it, sometime around August or September, the legislature decided that text messaging while driving was just as dangerous. BANNED! Law to take effect January 1st, 2009. And that's where we find ourselves today.
Now in the interest of intellectual honesty, I will admit that I am one of those people who reads, composes, and sends text messages while driving. In my defense however, I drive about 5 times as much as a normal person, maybe more. So its unrealistic to think that I would never find myself in a situation in which I have to read, write or send a text. Also, I have an incredible driving record. (In every state but Illinois. Lol. But that's another blog for another time). So what I'm saying is that whenever I'm driving, I'm also in my office. Meaning that text messages, emails and making/taking phone calls is an absolute must. And to this point, I've been nothing but safe while doing so.
That's my initial argument against the anti-texting ban. However, I have one main argument. We've all seen people driving doing something that I believe is infinitely more dangerous while driving. I'm speaking of people who drive while holding they damn dogs! I don't know about you, but this ranks in my top ten of all-time pet peeves (No pun intended). Now I believe it a fair comparison. Holding a dog while driving versus holding a cell phone while driving. The difference between the two is that the cell phone is an object that only responds to what I command it to do. A dog on the other hand is an animal that is has a mind of its own. Yes there are some dogs that are better trained than others, but that dog is still going to do what it wants to do at the end of the day. And no matter how well trained the dog is, it has absolutely no concept of what the driver is doing.
All that being said, you might ask yourself "why isn't holding an animal while driving illegal?" Seems like a proper question given the assault of cell phone usage the last 3-5 years. Well, in all fairness, the California legislature took up the issue in 2008. A bill was proposed, and passed. All it required was a signature from the governor. No Go! Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, in his seemingly limited wisdom, vetoed the bill as it came across his desk. Now this is the man who said “The simple fact is it’s dangerous to talk on your cell phone while driving. CHP data show that cell phones are the number one cause of distracted-driving accidents.” Hmmm, I may be able to concede that fact. But since you're doing such a bang up job Nanny Governator, why don't you take a stab at some other things that are dangerous while driving? Say, changing the song on the radio or your ipod, grabbing a bite to eat on the go, and definitely keeping them damn dogs out of the front seat of your car.
I'm not against passing laws to protect the masses. Sometimes government does have our greater good at heart. It just when you have such hypocrisy on the part of some law makers, you have to wonder what their actual motivations are. When it comes to these cell phone laws, I'm sure that the makers of different bluetooth and ear pieces have paid a pretty penny to different governments around the country to ensure that you'll no longer be able to get by with just a hand held. And to all you pooch holders: I guess until PETA starts bitching to the government about how you're endangering the welfare of your pets, and someone invents a doggy car seat, and then lobbies the government to pass a ban on holding your pets while driving, I guess you're in the clear. (Lord, please hasten that day)!