Friday, June 29, 2001

Last week New York lawmakers became the first in the nation to initiate a statewide ban on using cell phones while driving. This act was immediately criticized as an example of legislating by polls, and not by facts.

It was pointed out by many detractors that the AAA had recently released a study showing that cell phone usage ranked 4th in terms of driver distractions. Number 1 was Food; Number 2 was Radio; Number 3 was a passenger.

In an attempt to save face, the New York state legislature today enacted a new driver safety law banning eating, listening to the radio, and the carrying of passengers while driving. Amendments that failed to make it into the final bill including bans on drinking, listening to tapes or CDs, and the carrying of pets while driving.

Environmentalists immediately reacted, stating that the banning of passengers would destroy years of efforts at encouraging carpools, and would cause more traffic as well as more environmental degradation by forcing more single-occupant vehicles onto the road. They did, however, applaud the banning of food behind the wheel, as the most commonly eaten road foods are national chain burgers, and rarely macro-biotic snack treats.

State Senator Hrummph P. Hrummph replied to the environmental lobby, stating, "The saving of human lives through this traffic safety measure far outweighs any minor increase in so called 'greenhouse emissions' that may result from having more cars on the road. Besides, think of the health benefits of forcing all children and others without driver's licenses to walk everywhere!"

The above is satire. If you cannot tell the difference between the real news these days and satires of the real news, you're not alone. God help us all.

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