Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Helmet and Seat Belt Laws

Gee, maybe Idaho should repeal the seat belt law to match the over-18-no-motorcycle-helmet law. Then we could read even more stories about people dying from being ejected from their cars.

Idaho could change its motto to be similar to New Hampshire's "Live Free or Die." IdahoƂ’s could be "Bike and Drive Free and Die." If you think this is funny, take a look at the people (no helmets) on motorcycles on the front page (Daily News, July 17), the sad story on Page 3 about the Pullman couple who were killed in a motorcycle crash (no helmets), and "Idaho stands as a haven for helmetless bikers" on Page 4.

Add to that the helmet story on the front page of Sunday's Lewiston Tribune. What part of death rate statistics and accident news stories resulting from not wearing helmets or seatbelts do people not understand?

You can be sure that everyone who has either died or suffered severe injuries never imagined it could happen to them.

Karin Clifford, Moscow
What part of personal choice and freedom does Karin not understand? Does wearing a seat belt in a car and a helmet on a motorcycle save lives? Yes. No doubt about it. But the question is should the government limit the citizens to only safe activities? Should the people be free to choose a path for their own life?

I think that people should be free to make decisions about their life. If on the way to skydiving, bungee jumping, andclifff diving I should have the freedom to not wear a seatbelt.

If I want todrivee a motorcycle down a freeway and feel the air running through my hair I should be able to. The one thing those statistics she cites does not show is how many of those helmet-less riders CHOSE to be helmetless. That was what they wanted to do. They knew the risks involved and chose to not wear one.

Let me live my life, Karin, and you live yours. You can wear your seatbelt, I wont stop you. But don't make me buckle up, unless I choose it on my own.


Ray Lindquist said...

Scotty, right on!! I would not be caught dead (no pun intended) riding withOUT a helmet but as you said they should have that right, we should not take that from them. Karin and people like her think that the state is their 'savior', but that is not the case. The LORD Jesus Christ is The Savior and no other. The state has attempted to lift themselves and/or the people have lifted it to a position, it can NEVER hold.
When it comes to seatbelts and helmets they should make a law that releases the state from any costs associated with the up keep of some person that is injured from an accident not using something that has been proven over and over again to save life’s. That way the person is free to be as dumb as they want and it may clean up the gene pool in the process.

April E. Coggins said...

A person's freedom to make choices is what makes us individuals. Riding a motorcycle without a helmet does not make that person a dummy. I must disagree with Ray that risk takers should be eliminated from the gene pool. We need more risk takers. Without risk takers we would not have soldiers, pilots, race car drivers, police or firemen. In fact, using fireworks has it's risks, and is sometimes fatal, as we all heard what happened at the casino in Worley. There are many more risk takers that we only seem to notice when someone has an exciting/tragic accident. It's tragic but so is cancer and heart attacks and strokes. We never hear about those tragedies. Life is a series of tragedies, if that's all we notice. Life is also a series of opportunites for fun and joy. Hopefully, you caught the story about Bob and Lavonne Berg in the Evergreen. They lived for fun and adventure. There was almost nothing they would't try once. We are all guaranteed death, Bob and Lavonne died enjoying life. I will miss them both.

Ray Lindquist said...

April, Thanks for the thoughts. I will be posting more on "Risk Takers" in the near future to try to clear up my point and we may be on the 'same-sheet-of-music', we will have to see, I hope so. Thanks again for the idea.