S620 GENERAL BILL by Bullard Cellular Telephone Use/Vehicles [EPCC]; prohibits use of cellular telephone while operating motor vehicle; provides enhanced penalty for violation that occurs in posted school zone. Creates 316.305. EFFECTIVE DATE: 07/01/2007. 01/17/07 SENATE FiledPropsed cell phone 01/31/07 SENATE Referred to Transportation; communications and Public Utilities; Criminal Justice; Transportation and Economic Development Appropriations:
Whenever I advocate for for the above the response I often get is something like, " Whoa I thought you were against laws and totalitarian enactments and now you want to take away my Freedoms by denying me (and me) my Right to use a cell phone in a car?"
Well, 1. I am not against laws. We are a nation founded on basic rights and principles and laws to protect those rights. I do not advocate Anarchy (when I was young maybe, when I thought I was nine foot tall and bullet proof. But I don't bounce so well or heal up so quick anymore). 2. I am against laws that restrict Individual Freedoms and Rights. Is that a contradiction? No!
Heres the gig, somehow, someway people got the idea that a drivers license gives you the right to do anything you want within the confines of your vehicle. Or that driving itself is a "Right". It isn't. It says so right in the little book you are supposed to read before taking your driving test. Driving, in the state of Florida is a priviledge granted you by demonstrating that you are able to operate said vehicle in a such a manner as to not take anybody riding with or around you out. Now, it is against the law to take yourself out. But I disagree with that one. That infringes on your "Freedom." And if you wish to take advantage of that freedom there are ways to do so without endangering others.
I'm reminded of a time while at the beach, some folk took a dog cage full of dog stuff out of
the back of their pick em up and washed it out in the water where everybody was swimming (I don't swim. Swimming to me ain't nothing but staying alive while in the water). Well this drunk (who had to drive home) looks at me and says. "we gots to drive on the same roads as those people". My point (I got one somewhere just gotta look for it, OK found it), I was gonna have to drive on the same road as the drunk (no offense to drunks. Hell I'm a drunk. But just when I drink). Otherwise sane people think they can do just about anything in a car (or pick em up) without it affecting their driving. I know, I have tried bout everything. Many of which I probably best not mention here (ask a trucker) but it should go without saying my mind was not fully occupied with getting from point A to point B safely (oh damn I did say sane people didn't I)?
It ain't just cell phones either. Ever spill hot coffee in your lap or knock the head of a cigarette in your eye tryin to flick it out the window while driving. Ever know anybody just got to shove a dripping burrito in their mouth goin down the road cause they suffer from a calorie deficiency. I even saw a lady breast feeding while goin down the road once. I remember thinking, I hope that air bag don't go off. Hell my mama once threw my little sister from the back seat to the front seat when she slammed on the brakes cause she dropped her beer.
It ain't just cagers either. I can tell you that it is not a good Idea to shove one of them hand warmer thingys down your jeans to take care of that little area chaps don't cover whilst doin 70 on a MC.
See I think many of us, when we get in a car (or pick em up, prob. most especially pick em ups)
leave our brains behind. We adopt that "that stuff happens to other people it won't happen to me" attitude. Wonder how many people been killed by stuff that "won't happen to them"?
See science (yeah I know, science doesn't apply to us) will tell you that using a cell phone while driving is comparable to driving while under the influence of alcohol (click on the link to MADD for the "proof" and yes I know you don't have to because again, that stuff applies to other people). You are not "free" to drive while intoxicated, (unfortunately you can while under the influence of stupidity). To do so is to endanger my life. OK get this, you ain't free to do that. You have no right to put me or my loved ones at risk because you think it is all about you. That violates my freedom and right to use the public roadways without being your target!
Now I know that call from somebody asking "where are you now" is vitally important but you have swerved into my lane while answering it.
Now to be fair I gots to be honest and admit that despite my best intentions (I am working on it) I find myself, on occasion (I be gettin a heap better) reaching for the cell phone when I do have the opportunity to drive a cage (fortunately not often). I have to work on it harder, cause just as I know that my next drink could kill me, so could answering that next call. rc