Friday, January 27, 2006

Sinful Driving

There are people who are anti-war. Typically this is because they see war as being a source of senseless death. To a degree this is an accurate assessment. There are also people who seek legislation toward a higher level of gun control for the same reason. There are people who seek legislation that controls pollution that emanates from factories and vehicles. This is because they believe it will result in an atmosphere that will be increasingly unfriendly to life. To some extent, they may have a point.

Here in North Carolina as gas taxes increase and the quality of our roads degrades, a law exists that will fine an automobile owner a couple hundred dollars and add points to his license if his inspection sticker runs out. Oddly, this is a higher penalty than if he got pulled over for exceeding the speed limit or driving recklessly. One crime is directly dangerous. The other is not dangerous. What I mean is that an up-to-date inspection sticker doesn't have any correlation to the output of atmospheric contaminants - yet it is considered worse by the law than if one threatens the lives of other motorists and passengers by driving dangerously.

In the news is an account of seven siblings riding in an automobile together. A truck driver wasn't paying attention and ran them over. It's bad enough for a parent to lose one child, but to lose all seven of them at once? Their grandfather was so grieved by the loss that his weak heart stopped and he joined them in death.

I drive a small car, a 2002 2-door Ford Focus. It gets good gas mileage and has power when I need it. It can turn on a dime and stop on that same dime. Unfortunately, unthinking motorists with vans, trucks, SUVs and even tractor-trailers seem to think they can stop as fast as I can and ride my going-the-speed-limit tail. One day, my children will attend their father's funeral and struggle with forgiveness toward the idiot that took my life because he didn't have the foresight to drive safely.

I almost got wiped out once as I sat just over the crest of a hill on a highway waiting for traffic to pass so I could turn left. A driver who didn't think she should be able see where she could stop came over the crest of the hill too fast. She couldn't stop in time and swerved off the road hitting another car waiting to enter the highway.

There are regular drivers on a back road near my house who like to pass vehicles on a double-yellow line. I've been run off the road coming from the other direction as I meet them on the other side of a hill.

Anymore, I look both ways at a green light because blind people are driving vehicles. How else can they miss those super-bright red LED lights? More than once I've been nearly hit by these people.

Where's the outrage from the peaceniks about the terrorism on our own roads? Where's the call for more traffic legislation from the gun-control advocates and environmentalists?

If you are a Christian, know that intentionally driving unsafely is a sin.


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