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Texting While Driving Laws are Pointless

Khaos_Mage
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8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Hear me out.

I am not saying that texting while driving is not dangerous, but the laws that expressly prohibit them are likely redundant and, thus pointless.

The fact that I am texting is not an issue, unless I am doing something wrong, like swerving or speeding. So, to give out tickets based solely on this issue is either an attempt for politician to appear compassionate or a way to raise money for local police departments (see also: primary seatbelt laws).

What is more aggravating though, is the fact that laws prohibiting distracted driving are already on the books. In MN, there are careless and reckless driving laws. I can only imagine that if I wasn't paying attention to the road because I was distracted by something else (whether it is a text, phone call, weather report, commotion in the backseat, trying to read a bumper sticker or billboard, eating fast food, applying makeup, etc.), I would get one of those.

If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.
My work here is, finally, done.
lewis20
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8/28/2013 5:38:27 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
That's the same argument against drunk driving.
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Khaos_Mage
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8/28/2013 5:52:45 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 5:38:27 PM, lewis20 wrote:
That's the same argument against drunk driving.

Yes and no.
In many aspects, it is the same.
But, it is different, because it specifically prohibits certain behavior, but not other equally dangerous behavior. Yelling at your kids in the back, eating a hamburger, changing the radio station, and looking at a text are all equally dangerous, but only one of this is grounds for an automatic ticket.
My work here is, finally, done.
donald.keller
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8/28/2013 5:58:30 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
Hear me out.

I am not saying that texting while driving is not dangerous, but the laws that expressly prohibit them are likely redundant and, thus pointless.

The fact that I am texting is not an issue, unless I am doing something wrong, like swerving or speeding. So, to give out tickets based solely on this issue is either an attempt for politician to appear compassionate or a way to raise money for local police departments (see also: primary seatbelt laws).

What is more aggravating though, is the fact that laws prohibiting distracted driving are already on the books. In MN, there are careless and reckless driving laws. I can only imagine that if I wasn't paying attention to the road because I was distracted by something else (whether it is a text, phone call, weather report, commotion in the backseat, trying to read a bumper sticker or billboard, eating fast food, applying makeup, etc.), I would get one of those.

If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

Texting while driving is only possibly dangerous. That's your first argument? That because people are dangerous some of (most of) the time when texting while driving, they should be allowed to do it...

And redundancy? The Government likes redundancy in laws. It closes loopholes and shortcuts they don't want open. The more laws regarding different forms of dangerous driving, the less loopholes that might allow it.

That, and a smart person won't do it because they would be punished for reckless driving AND texting and driving. Which is good seeing as Texting while Driving leads to 25%+ of all car accidents.
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Khaos_Mage
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8/28/2013 6:04:13 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 5:58:30 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
Hear me out.

I am not saying that texting while driving is not dangerous, but the laws that expressly prohibit them are likely redundant and, thus pointless.

The fact that I am texting is not an issue, unless I am doing something wrong, like swerving or speeding. So, to give out tickets based solely on this issue is either an attempt for politician to appear compassionate or a way to raise money for local police departments (see also: primary seatbelt laws).

What is more aggravating though, is the fact that laws prohibiting distracted driving are already on the books. In MN, there are careless and reckless driving laws. I can only imagine that if I wasn't paying attention to the road because I was distracted by something else (whether it is a text, phone call, weather report, commotion in the backseat, trying to read a bumper sticker or billboard, eating fast food, applying makeup, etc.), I would get one of those.

If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

Texting while driving is only possibly dangerous. That's your first argument? That because people are dangerous some of (most of) the time when texting while driving, they should be allowed to do it...
They shouldn't be punished for not being a danger to anyone.
Tell me, what is the definition of driving?
If I am stuck in traffic bumper to bumper traffic and no one is moving, can I send a text real quick? Is that dangerous? What about at a stop light?

More importantly, why should I be penalized if I put no one in danger?
If I am texting and I swerve, fine, ticket me. Hell, ticket me twice, once for careless driving, and once for swerving. That alone should be enough to deter people.

And redundancy? The Government likes redundancy in laws. It closes loopholes and shortcuts they don't want open. The more laws regarding different forms of dangerous driving, the less loopholes that might allow it.
This is what annoys me.
So, let's make a law requiring safe driving, or tickets for all.
Let's make a law requiring people to get enough sleep, too.

That, and a smart person won't do it because they would be punished for reckless driving AND texting and driving. Which is good seeing as Texting while Driving leads to 25%+ of all car accidents.
Assuming your stat is true, how many texts are sent/viewed that lead to no crashes?
My work here is, finally, done.
donald.keller
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8/28/2013 6:37:19 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 6:04:13 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:58:30 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
Hear me out.

I am not saying that texting while driving is not dangerous, but the laws that expressly prohibit them are likely redundant and, thus pointless.

The fact that I am texting is not an issue, unless I am doing something wrong, like swerving or speeding. So, to give out tickets based solely on this issue is either an attempt for politician to appear compassionate or a way to raise money for local police departments (see also: primary seatbelt laws).

What is more aggravating though, is the fact that laws prohibiting distracted driving are already on the books. In MN, there are careless and reckless driving laws. I can only imagine that if I wasn't paying attention to the road because I was distracted by something else (whether it is a text, phone call, weather report, commotion in the backseat, trying to read a bumper sticker or billboard, eating fast food, applying makeup, etc.), I would get one of those.

If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

Texting while driving is only possibly dangerous. That's your first argument? That because people are dangerous some of (most of) the time when texting while driving, they should be allowed to do it...
They shouldn't be punished for not being a danger to anyone.

1.6 million car accidents are caused by them.

Tell me, what is the definition of driving?
If I am stuck in traffic bumper to bumper traffic and no one is moving, can I send a text real quick? Is that dangerous? What about at a stop light?

noun
the control and operation of a motor vehicle:
Oxford Dictionary.

Driving doesn't only imply you are moving, but that you simply operating the vehicle. You want to text? Pull Over. Operating a vehicle, regardless of where you are, even at a stop sign, demands your responsibility and attention.


More importantly, why should I be penalized if I put no one in danger?

1.6 million accidents. Leading cause of teen deaths. Kills more civilians each year than the Iraqi war.

If I am texting and I swerve, fine, ticket me. Hell, ticket me twice, once for careless driving, and once for swerving. That alone should be enough to deter people.

Or not text and not risk swerving.


And redundancy? The Government likes redundancy in laws. It closes loopholes and shortcuts they don't want open. The more laws regarding different forms of dangerous driving, the less loopholes that might allow it.
This is what annoys me.
So, let's make a law requiring safe driving, or tickets for all.

That's the point.

Let's make a law requiring people to get enough sleep, too.

My lack of sleep doesn't cause 1.6 million accidents. Although you can be punished for falling asleep at the wheel.


That, and a smart person won't do it because they would be punished for reckless driving AND texting and driving. Which is good seeing as Texting while Driving leads to 25%+ of all car accidents.
Assuming your stat is true, how many texts are sent/viewed that lead to no crashes?

When 1.6 million accidents are caused, it doesn't matter how many texts are sent. If it were 170 billion texts, and 1.6 million accidents are caused, we mustn't allow them. It would be different if only 1000 were being caused.

It's 170 billion a month. it takes 10,006 texts to lead to an accident... the problem is that you allow that number to accumulate. We allow everyone to text, they aren't going to only text the 10,005 texts that are safe.

If we allow everyone to text while driving, we begin playing Russian Roulette. We allow you to do it once, twice, thir... POW!

http://www.textinganddrivingsafety.com...
http://www.nationwide.com...
http://articles.washingtonpost.com...
http://www.nsc.org...
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Wallstreetatheist
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8/28/2013 6:38:44 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
This is what the law causes people to do:

Instead of putting the phone up to the windshield to text so the road can be seen, the driver puts the phone down low to text where cops can't see it as they drive by and scans around cross streets for cops, taking their eyes further away from the road.

The law in some states won't even permit texting at stop lights. This is even more ridiculous. Instead of texting in line-of-sight with the stop light, the driver now is pressured to put the phone down low to text instead of viewing the stop light.
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donald.keller
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8/28/2013 8:17:34 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 6:38:44 PM, Wallstreetatheist wrote:
This is what the law causes people to do:

Instead of putting the phone up to the windshield to text so the road can be seen, the driver puts the phone down low to text where cops can't see it as they drive by and scans around cross streets for cops, taking their eyes further away from the road.

The law in some states won't even permit texting at stop lights. This is even more ridiculous. Instead of texting in line-of-sight with the stop light, the driver now is pressured to put the phone down low to text instead of viewing the stop light.

I never believe that how one chooses to break the law defines whether it should be law. By your logic, we should legalize stealing, so people don't have to try to hide that they are doing it.

Even if you hold the phone up so you can see everything, you aren't paying attention to everything. You will still often enough not see that the light changed, even if you think you will notice it. Try walking down 6 or 7 city blocks while texting and see how it ends (let me tell you from experience, it ends badly.)

Before Texting laws were mainstream, and people texted freely, there were many more text-related accidents per 1000 cell phones in the US, so your claim that texting laws are increasing accidents simply isn't valid.
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pozessed
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8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?
donald.keller
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8/28/2013 8:49:36 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

We do need laws for that. Of course. But layering laws (Drunk Driving, Texting, Reckless Driving, etc...) help further close loopholes as well. But ultimately there is another benefit to these individual laws, public awareness. Saying "Don't do it" raises only a little awareness, start ending out tickets for doing it, and public awareness skyrockets, which is good.
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donald.keller
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8/28/2013 8:59:36 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

But what I'm getting at is Ya, that law should exist...
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pozessed
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8/28/2013 9:00:46 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 8:49:36 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

We do need laws for that. Of course. But layering laws (Drunk Driving, Texting, Reckless Driving, etc...) help further close loopholes as well. But ultimately there is another benefit to these individual laws, public awareness. Saying "Don't do it" raises only a little awareness, start ending out tickets for doing it, and public awareness skyrockets, which is good.

It seems to me that the OP wouldn't have a problem with getting charged with 2 charges if caught driving and texting. 1 charge for reckless driving (lack of 10 and 2) as well as texting and driving.
I think his point is that texting in a vehicle isn't always a major threat and the laws should be waived for non-moving drivers. There is no law for sitting at a red light or stop sign for too long is there?
donald.keller
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8/28/2013 9:10:00 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 9:00:46 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:49:36 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

We do need laws for that. Of course. But layering laws (Drunk Driving, Texting, Reckless Driving, etc...) help further close loopholes as well. But ultimately there is another benefit to these individual laws, public awareness. Saying "Don't do it" raises only a little awareness, start ending out tickets for doing it, and public awareness skyrockets, which is good.

It seems to me that the OP wouldn't have a problem with getting charged with 2 charges if caught driving and texting. 1 charge for reckless driving (lack of 10 and 2) as well as texting and driving.
I think his point is that texting in a vehicle isn't always a major threat and the laws should be waived for non-moving drivers. There is no law for sitting at a red light or stop sign for too long is there?

I'm not sure if there is... I know one would come into place will quick if people started doing that, but I'm not sure if they have one now. I know when the light goes green, I'd like to get moving.
I guess the question should be, do you think it should be legal to sit at a green light or stop sign with a line behind you?
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pozessed
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8/28/2013 9:24:53 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 9:10:00 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 9:00:46 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:49:36 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

We do need laws for that. Of course. But layering laws (Drunk Driving, Texting, Reckless Driving, etc...) help further close loopholes as well. But ultimately there is another benefit to these individual laws, public awareness. Saying "Don't do it" raises only a little awareness, start ending out tickets for doing it, and public awareness skyrockets, which is good.

It seems to me that the OP wouldn't have a problem with getting charged with 2 charges if caught driving and texting. 1 charge for reckless driving (lack of 10 and 2) as well as texting and driving.
I think his point is that texting in a vehicle isn't always a major threat and the laws should be waived for non-moving drivers. There is no law for sitting at a red light or stop sign for too long is there?

I'm not sure if there is... I know one would come into place will quick if people started doing that, but I'm not sure if they have one now. I know when the light goes green, I'd like to get moving.
I guess the question should be, do you think it should be legal to sit at a green light or stop sign with a line behind you?

I'm too patient to answer that question fairly. It wouldn't bother me as much as it may bother others. Although, sitting at a light for a few extra minutes so people can text would be better than them driving on the road and texting inconspicuously.
pozessed
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8/28/2013 9:27:26 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
If that 10 and 2 idea were made into a law, do you think people would pull over more often to text out of courtesy, even if it was legal to text at lights and stop signs?
donald.keller
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8/28/2013 9:32:09 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 9:24:53 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 9:10:00 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 9:00:46 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:49:36 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

We do need laws for that. Of course. But layering laws (Drunk Driving, Texting, Reckless Driving, etc...) help further close loopholes as well. But ultimately there is another benefit to these individual laws, public awareness. Saying "Don't do it" raises only a little awareness, start ending out tickets for doing it, and public awareness skyrockets, which is good.

It seems to me that the OP wouldn't have a problem with getting charged with 2 charges if caught driving and texting. 1 charge for reckless driving (lack of 10 and 2) as well as texting and driving.
I think his point is that texting in a vehicle isn't always a major threat and the laws should be waived for non-moving drivers. There is no law for sitting at a red light or stop sign for too long is there?

I'm not sure if there is... I know one would come into place will quick if people started doing that, but I'm not sure if they have one now. I know when the light goes green, I'd like to get moving.
I guess the question should be, do you think it should be legal to sit at a green light or stop sign with a line behind you?

I'm too patient to answer that question fairly. It wouldn't bother me as much as it may bother others.
Although, sitting at a light for a few extra minutes so people can text would be better than them driving on the road and texting inconspicuously.

I can respect that answer fully.
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Wallstreetatheist
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8/29/2013 6:01:53 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 8:17:34 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 6:38:44 PM, Wallstreetatheist wrote:
This is what the law causes people to do:

Instead of putting the phone up to the windshield to text so the road can be seen, the driver puts the phone down low to text where cops can't see it as they drive by and scans around cross streets for cops, taking their eyes further away from the road.

The law in some states won't even permit texting at stop lights. This is even more ridiculous. Instead of texting in line-of-sight with the stop light, the driver now is pressured to put the phone down low to text instead of viewing the stop light.

I never believe that how one chooses to break the law defines whether it should be law.

With that belief you've basically cut yourself off from the fields of economics and behavioral psychology. If a law causes drastically more harm than good by the way people choose to break it (e.g. gun bans generating increased violent crime, War on Drugs increasing homicide and kidnapping by thousands of percentage point), then that should be a factor in whether or not something should be a law--assumes the purpose of a law is to benefit the public, the majority of the time that is not the case. I just wanted to humor your naivete with regard to statism.

By your logic, we should legalize stealing, so people don't have to try to hide that they are doing it.

Dafuq? My logic is: don't pass a law that makes people more dangerous.

Before Texting laws were mainstream, and people texted freely, there were many more text-related accidents per 1000 cell phones in the US, so your claim that texting laws are increasing accidents simply isn't valid.

Derp.

"Bans on texting while driving don't reduce crashes, study says. Few dispute that texting while driving is risky. But the usual solution " laws banning behind-the-wheel texting " has not made a dent in the number of car crashes, according to new safety findings."
http://www.csmonitor.com...

"RI"s Texting While Driving Law Proving Ineffective"
http://www.golocalprov.com...

"Laws Against Texting While Driving Are Ineffective"
http://ic.galegroup.com...

"Texting and driving law is ineffective due to outdated assumptions"
http://www.purdueexponent.org...

"Texting laws ineffective, hard to enforce, police say"
http://thetimes-tribune.com...
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Khaos_Mage
Posts: 23,214
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8/29/2013 9:44:01 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 9:00:46 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:49:36 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

We do need laws for that. Of course. But layering laws (Drunk Driving, Texting, Reckless Driving, etc...) help further close loopholes as well. But ultimately there is another benefit to these individual laws, public awareness. Saying "Don't do it" raises only a little awareness, start ending out tickets for doing it, and public awareness skyrockets, which is good.

It seems to me that the OP wouldn't have a problem with getting charged with 2 charges if caught driving and texting. 1 charge for reckless driving (lack of 10 and 2) as well as texting and driving.

Close. One for reckless/careless driving (texting) and one for the actual danger (i.e. law) committed (changing lanes without signaling, crossing center line).

Just because I am texting and driving just as safe as everyone else, doesn't mean I should get a ticket.

I think his point is that texting in a vehicle isn't always a major threat and the laws should be waived for non-moving drivers. There is no law for sitting at a red light or stop sign for too long is there?

My point is that if texting while driving is inherently careless/reckless driving, then they can be pulled over at the cop's discretion currently, and the law is not needed.
My work here is, finally, done.
pozessed
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8/29/2013 9:53:49 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/29/2013 9:44:01 AM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
At 8/28/2013 9:00:46 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:49:36 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

We do need laws for that. Of course. But layering laws (Drunk Driving, Texting, Reckless Driving, etc...) help further close loopholes as well. But ultimately there is another benefit to these individual laws, public awareness. Saying "Don't do it" raises only a little awareness, start ending out tickets for doing it, and public awareness skyrockets, which is good.

It seems to me that the OP wouldn't have a problem with getting charged with 2 charges if caught driving and texting. 1 charge for reckless driving (lack of 10 and 2) as well as texting and driving.

Close. One for reckless/careless driving (texting) and one for the actual danger (i.e. law) committed (changing lanes without signaling, crossing center line).

I assume your talking about the current laws and not the law proposed. I was under the assumption that you could be pulled over if both hands were not on the wheel and the police saw that.

Just because I am texting and driving just as safe as everyone else, doesn't mean I should get a ticket.

I think his point is that texting in a vehicle isn't always a major threat and the laws should be waived for non-moving drivers. There is no law for sitting at a red light or stop sign for too long is there?

My point is that if texting while driving is inherently careless/reckless driving, then they can be pulled over at the cop's discretion currently, and the law is not needed.

Right, but I kinda changed the topic a bit by suggesting that your 10 and 2 rule was an actual offense and made a couple predictions about it.

I also predict that cops could take advantage of that law by merely "claiming" they saw a driver with 1 hand off the wheel. It would then be their word against the alleged offender.
I could see that as a potential threat to society if not maintained properly.
Khaos_Mage
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8/29/2013 10:02:10 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/28/2013 6:37:19 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 6:04:13 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:58:30 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
Hear me out.

I am not saying that texting while driving is not dangerous, but the laws that expressly prohibit them are likely redundant and, thus pointless.

The fact that I am texting is not an issue, unless I am doing something wrong, like swerving or speeding. So, to give out tickets based solely on this issue is either an attempt for politician to appear compassionate or a way to raise money for local police departments (see also: primary seatbelt laws).

What is more aggravating though, is the fact that laws prohibiting distracted driving are already on the books. In MN, there are careless and reckless driving laws. I can only imagine that if I wasn't paying attention to the road because I was distracted by something else (whether it is a text, phone call, weather report, commotion in the backseat, trying to read a bumper sticker or billboard, eating fast food, applying makeup, etc.), I would get one of those.

If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

Texting while driving is only possibly dangerous. That's your first argument? That because people are dangerous some of (most of) the time when texting while driving, they should be allowed to do it...
They shouldn't be punished for not being a danger to anyone.

1.6 million car accidents are caused by them.
I only looked at your first source, which says that 23% of accidents involved cell phone use, not specifically texting. This was 1.3 million.

So, seeing how cell phones are responsible for MORE than just texting, why are texting prohibitions more popular? It's the flavor of the month.

Tell me, what is the definition of driving?
If I am stuck in traffic bumper to bumper traffic and no one is moving, can I send a text real quick? Is that dangerous? What about at a stop light?

noun
the control and operation of a motor vehicle:
Oxford Dictionary.

Driving doesn't only imply you are moving, but that you simply operating the vehicle. You want to text? Pull Over. Operating a vehicle, regardless of where you are, even at a stop sign, demands your responsibility and attention.

Legal definition =/= dictionary definition
My father got a DWI for sleeping in his car in the parking lot of his apartment building. So, pulling over is still operating, and it is often illegal to pull over on highways.

In fact, I believe "driving" involves the key in the ignition and/or "driver" being able to access them.


More importantly, why should I be penalized if I put no one in danger?

1.6 million accidents. Leading cause of teen deaths. Kills more civilians each year than the Iraqi war.

A cop will see me texting and can immediately use his discretion to decide if I am putting others in danger or breaking any other laws. If the cop sees no danger, then why should I get a ticket?

If I am texting and I swerve, fine, ticket me. Hell, ticket me twice, once for careless driving, and once for swerving. That alone should be enough to deter people.

Or not text and not risk swerving.
Why can't a cop use his discretion?

Furthermore, how, exactly, is a cop supposed to know if I am texting? In my state, it is not illegal to use my phone, but it is illegal to text, so... how does a cop know if I am texting or dialing?
My work here is, finally, done.
Khaos_Mage
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8/29/2013 10:05:05 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/29/2013 9:53:49 AM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/29/2013 9:44:01 AM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
At 8/28/2013 9:00:46 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:49:36 PM, donald.keller wrote:
At 8/28/2013 8:30:55 PM, pozessed wrote:
At 8/28/2013 5:35:30 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
If we really wanted to promote public safety, let's instead pass a law that requires both hands to be at 10 and 2, like they teach you in school. But, no, let's pass numerous redundant laws that appeal to the flavor of the month for political points.

I actually agree with that. It closes all the loop holes. If the car is stationary you can refrain from 10 and 2 I assume?

We do need laws for that. Of course. But layering laws (Drunk Driving, Texting, Reckless Driving, etc...) help further close loopholes as well. But ultimately there is another benefit to these individual laws, public awareness. Saying "Don't do it" raises only a little awareness, start ending out tickets for doing it, and public awareness skyrockets, which is good.

It seems to me that the OP wouldn't have a problem with getting charged with 2 charges if caught driving and texting. 1 charge for reckless driving (lack of 10 and 2) as well as texting and driving.

Close. One for reckless/careless driving (texting) and one for the actual danger (i.e. law) committed (changing lanes without signaling, crossing center line).

I assume your talking about the current laws and not the law proposed. I was under the assumption that you could be pulled over if both hands were not on the wheel and the police saw that.

Just because I am texting and driving just as safe as everyone else, doesn't mean I should get a ticket.

I think his point is that texting in a vehicle isn't always a major threat and the laws should be waived for non-moving drivers. There is no law for sitting at a red light or stop sign for too long is there?

My point is that if texting while driving is inherently careless/reckless driving, then they can be pulled over at the cop's discretion currently, and the law is not needed.

Right, but I kinda changed the topic a bit by suggesting that your 10 and 2 rule was an actual offense and made a couple predictions about it.
In a way, it is an actual offense, because if you're hands aren't at 10 and 2, then you may be swerving because you are otherwise preoccupied. This would be careless/reckless, but obviously not a crime simply because of where your hands are at the time.

I also predict that cops could take advantage of that law by merely "claiming" they saw a driver with 1 hand off the wheel. It would then be their word against the alleged offender.
I could see that as a potential threat to society if not maintained properly.
Like me dialing out on my phone instead of texting?
Or me not buckled up, even though I have no idea how you see that at night?
My work here is, finally, done.