The Instigator
BrandonSiler2044
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
MikelaC2596
Pro (for)
Winning
12 Points

Red Light Cameras

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
MikelaC2596
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/23/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,426 times Debate No: 24412
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (3)

 

BrandonSiler2044

Con

My position is against red light cameras. Anyone who disagrees with me, please present your case.
MikelaC2596

Pro

Red light cameras are a great tool developed by law enforcement to catch those who drive dangerously. Police can not be everywhere at once, so cameras to catch red light runners pose the same purpose as security cameras to catch convenience store robbers.

Those who drive recklessly endanger the lives of themselves and others. The distribution of traffic tickets are motivation to drive safely, and the point system used to determine license suspension keeps repeat offenders of the roads.

Red light cameras benefit those of us who actually obey traffic laws. Their benefit outweighs the low cost of installation and maintenance.
Debate Round No. 1
BrandonSiler2044

Con

I believe that Red Light cameras are unconstitutional, and can be abused to punish people who haven't broken the law. I also believe that they're punishment is just another way to make money.

1 - Unconstitutionality

The 5th amendment states that ""No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation."

Read more: http://www.revolutionary-war-and-beyond.com...

The 5th amendment guarantees an individuals right to due process and trial by jury. You can not receive a punishment without a trial unless a police witnesses the crime. If a police witnesses a crime and you still do not believe you were in the wrong, you have the option of taking the case to court.

2- Government abuse
If the government sends you a fine in the mail from the traffic camera, you do not have to pay it. They just hope that you are stupid enough to pay it so the state can receive money. This is because the state knows that it is unconstitutional, and if you don't pay it, there is nothing they can do about it. http://blogs.laweekly.com...

Also, if there is no proof that the picture was snapped when the light was red, the government can easily abuse this law and send penalty fines to people who havent broken the law.
MikelaC2596

Pro

"According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 22 percent of all traffic accidents in the United States are caused by drivers running red lights. Every year, these accidents kill some 800 people and rack up an estimated $7 billion dollars in property damage, medical bills, lost productivity and insurance hikes. And this sort of traffic violation seems to be on the rise. In many areas, red-light violations have increased by 10 percent or more since the 1980s."
" When the light is green or yellow for incoming traffic, the computer ignores the triggers and does not activate the cameras. The system doesn't "turn on" until it receives a signal that the light is red. If you're already in the middle of the intersection when the light turns red, the system will not activate the cameras (this is not a traffic violation in most areas). Some systems wait a fraction of a second after the light turns red, to give drivers a "grace period." ( http://auto.howstuffworks.com...)
There are many ways to contest fines, you are not immediately charged. The decision is made to pay, or if there are outstanding circumstances (I.e. making space for emergency vehicles or avoiding an accident) they can be brought before a judge.
the conspiracy that anything that inconveniences you is government corruption is ridiculous. Traffic cameras are legal. Running red lights are not. The U.S. Supreme Court has described driving as a regulated activity on public roads where there is no personal expectation of privacy. The same court ruled that the city of Chicago's photo enforcement system did not violate the Constitution.
Debate Round No. 2
BrandonSiler2044

Con

Pro used the argument that "According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 22 percent of all traffic accidents in the United States are caused by drivers running red lights. Every year, these accidents kill some 800 people and rack up an estimated $7 billion dollars in property damage, medical bills, lost productivity and insurance hikes."

What Pro cannot prove is how having red light cameras would prevent those accidents. The fact of the matter is is that people still run red lights regardless of whether there is a red light camera or not.

Pro cannot disprove my statement of the 5th amendment and how red light camera's are unconstitutional.

http://activerain.com...

The link above talks about the red light cameras in Chicago. If you come to a rolling stop into the intersection and go over the crosswalk most cameras will flash. You don't have to run a red light, you just have to be in the intersection while the light is red. You could possible get a fine for making a right turn at a red light as well. The cameras are just another way to make money and they don't stop people from running red lights.
MikelaC2596

Pro

The red light cameras reduce the amount of red light running. Since the installation of red light traffic cameras, central Florida crash data records reveal a drop of as much as 57 percent in rear-end crashes in, and even more of a cut in right-angle crashes. Experts believe that fear of a hefty ticket is causing all drivers to slow on yellow lights and stop on red. As far as being a cash cow for cities to generate revenue, Orlando reported a 22 percent drop in red light tickets.
your own source States " The cameras record the exact vehicle speed (to one-tenth MPH) during the entire process, and allow precise timing of how long after the light turned red did was the driver in the intersection, as well as the duration of the preceding yellow light." (From http://activerain.com...) these features are put in place to increase accuracy, not tamper evidence. You claim that " If you come to a rolling stop into the intersection and go over the crosswalk most cameras will flash." This is because crossing the stop line is also a traffic violation, one that can get you ticketed just the same as a "rolling stop" ( an oxymoron, seeing as when wheels are turning, you haven't stopped) through a stop sign.
According to HB 1500, sponsored by Rep. Vince Dean (R-East Ridge), traffic citations cannot be issued for failure to make a complete stop at a red signal before making a permitted right hand turn that is based solely upon evidence obtained from an unmanned traffic enforcement camera.
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by MikelaC2596 4 years ago
MikelaC2596
Thank you DouggyFresh, I'm happy to hear this kind of feedback. Even if I don't win, I'm really proud of my work here.
Posted by DouggyFresh 4 years ago
DouggyFresh
(Conduct 1) Pro rebutted your argument about red light cameras being unconstitutional in round 2, after which you said "Pro cannot disprove my statement of the 5th amendment and how red light camera's are unconstitutional" instead of taking the opportunity to counter.
(Conduct 2) Pro rebutted your argument that a red light camera is insufficient proof that someone ran a red light in round 2, after which you tried to turn the argument into being about whether or not red light cameras actually decrease the occurrences of running red lights (poor conduct in a final round btw)
(Arguments) This point was awarded to Pro because he responded to rebuttals in a logical and timely manner, and often provided reliable sources to back it up, while Con appeared to be all over the place, not really having any form or direction at most times. Furthermore, although Pro didn't bring it up, Con has the burden of proof in this scenario since [1] He issued the debate and [2] his side argues a change in the status quo. However Con seemed to be on defense the majority of the time.
(Sources) This one always makes me want to reach out, grab my computer screen, and shake it like a polaroid pictyah! WHAT ON EARTH MAKES YOU THINK BLOG ENTRIES ARE A SUITABLE FORM OF REFERENCE? I mean come ON! People will scour the web in search of things to back up their argument, passing one thing after another until finally seeing that one person, at some time or another, agreed with them. And this supports your argument HOW? I mean, even IF the guy has a PhD in whatever area you are looking at, has he done his research? Is he a reliable, unbiased source? 9 times out of 10 it's a NO.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Travniki 4 years ago
Travniki
BrandonSiler2044MikelaC2596Tied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: "The fact of the matter is is that people still run red lights regardless of whether there is a red light camera or not." BAD CON
Vote Placed by DouggyFresh 4 years ago
DouggyFresh
BrandonSiler2044MikelaC2596Tied
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Comments
Vote Placed by socialpinko 4 years ago
socialpinko
BrandonSiler2044MikelaC2596Tied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: I'm obviously no fan of the government but Pro won this one. Con's argument from unconstitutionality was defeated by Pro citing the Supreme Court's decision on the matter. Con's point about now having to pay traffic fines was also somewhat confusing and Pro refuted this as best she could by showing the right to contest them before a judge. Pro's arguments from public safety being put in jeopardy by traffic rule violations also went unrefuted by the Con.